XC Roundup: Roth smashes South record in win; Platte County solid at Capital City

Emma Roth set a school record and earned her second victory of the year in the Kansas City Classic held Saturday, Sept. 30 in Peculiar, Mo.

A senior, Roth continued her breakout season and finished in 18 minutes, 26.50 seconds to top the field by a full 13 seconds. Miranda Dick of Raymore-Peculiar finished second out of 155 runners at 18:39.60.

Still without its full top seven, Park Hill South ended up fifth out of 21 schools in the final standings.

Roth again led the way while Panthers senior Marti Heit placed 17th (19:48.60) in just her second race of the season. Olivia Roth and Paige Snider — both sophomores were within 5 seconds of each other in 31st and 34th before a dropoff to the fifth runner.

Emma Roth’s time broke Lexi Maddox’s school record of 19:00 set on the same course in the same meet in 2015. Roth shaved about 48 seconds off her career-best set the previous weekend in the Rim Rock Classic, and prior to this season, she had never run below 19:24 — a mark she posted as an all-state finisher as a freshman in 2014.

Park Hill South actually tied for fourth but finished fifth based on tiebreaker, and the Panthers were just 12 points out of third. Racing shorthanded much of the year, the defending Class 4 District 8 and Sectional 4 champions expect to have the full lineup for the first time at this weekend’s Suburban Conference Red Division Championships in Independence, Mo.

On the boys side, Park Hill sophomore Isaiah Phillips finished 41st out of 164 runners to lead the Trojans, who were 19th out of 23 teams in the final standings.

Capital City Challenge

Park Hill South senior Eli Guzman ran at the front of the secondary pack in a quick race Saturday, Sept. 30 at Oak Hills Golf Center in Jefferson City, Mo.

Running at the site of next month’s Missouri State Cross Country Championships, Guzman finished third in 16:38.37 to lead a solid showing for the Panthers in an elite field. Blue Springs senior Victor Mugeche won in 15:28.92 — just off the state championships record time — with Blue Springs senior Oaklee Hauschild in second.

Guzman was next with David Rouse (12th), Ewan Frick (16th) and Christian Ludtke (23rd) also in the top 25 for Park Hill South, which finished third out of 24 teams with a team total of 119.

Platte County saw a large group of runners post personal-best times for a second straight weekend, leading to a pair of solid team finishes. The Pirates had 15 out of 17 set a PR on the state course one week after nine hit best times in the Rim Rock Classic.

On the boys side, Jackson Letcher — a junior and two-time Class 4 state qualifier — finished eighth in 16:44.59 to lead Platte County. The next four runners were within 12 seconds of each other to round out a team total of 155, good enough for fifth and just two points behind Webster Groves for fourth.

Platte County junior Keegan Cordova was 31st with senior Nick Bjustrom in 36th and sophomores Evan McPhatter and Matthew Sullivan in 39th and 41st.

On the girls side, Platte County freshman Taylor Giger set a career-best of 20:58.32 and led a quartet of medal winners. The Pirates’ top four were separated by just 17 seconds with senior Lauren Johnson (25th), senior Erin Straubel (27th) and freshman Maddie Klippenstein (30th) right behind Giger.

Platte County totaled a 136 score and ended up fifth, as well.

Bishop LeBlond Invitational

North Platte bunched four in the top 25 on Saturday, Sept. 30 in St. Joseph, Mo. to finish fourth in the final boys team standings.

Zach Lee, a junior, led the way for the Panthers in 16th, while senior Caleb Crumley (18th) and juniors Tyler Meadows (24th) and Joe DeMarcus (25th) were right behind. They were part of a 107 team score that bested Lawson by one.

On the girls side, North Platte senior Bailee Romaker placed 22nd out of 43, and the Panthers were fifth out of six teams.

Horton Invitational

An error measuring the course led to a longer-than-normal race Thursday, Sept. 28 in Horton, Kan.

Rather than the normal 5k, runners ended up going nearly 6k, and despite the confusion, West Platte coach Mike Lowe remained positive with his runners’ performance. The Blujays boys came in fourth overall with junior Max Davies leading the way in third. Phillip Pattison (ninth) and Andy Cicha (21st) were next in the 86-runner field.

West Platte freshman Lexi Elmore ran by herself and ended up fourth as the Bluejays’ lone runner on the girls side.