The Litchfield girls cross country team has a long history of success at the South Central Conference meet and on Saturday, Oct. 15, Myka Fenton added to that legacy.
Fenton finished seventh last year as a sophomore, behind five Roxana runners and Hillsboro’s Sierra Compton. But with Roxana leaving to join the Cahokia Conference and Compton still battling back from an early season bout with heat exhaustion, the title was Fenton’s for the taking. The Litchfield junior moved out in front early and stayed there, running a time of 20:23 as she cut more than 70 seconds off her time from last year and was the only female runner to break 21 minutes.
Fenton’s win is Litchfield’s best finish since 2011, when Victoria Quarton won the second of her back-to-back SCC titles.
Fenton wasn’t the only standout for the Panthers, though, as Litchfield put at least three runners on the all-conference list for the ninth time in the last 10 years. Three-time all-conference honoree Kylee Eiting completed the career sweep with a second place finish for the Panthers, finishing in 21:08 to beat Gillespie’s Brynn Baker by 11 seconds.
Delanie Ulrich, who also earned all-conference honors last year, ran a 21:52 to finish fifth to complete Litchfield’s all SCC trifecta.
A little further back were Litchfield’s next three runners as Harlee Traylor finished 18th, Joelle Hughes was 20th and Emma Hughes was 29th. Traylor would run a 26:11, while the Hughes sisters ran times of 26:13 and 29:04.
While the boys race was decided by the sixth runner tiebreaker, the girls’ race was nearly as close. Gillespie would beat Litchfield by just four points as the Miners had all five of their runners in the top 13 to offset the Panthers’ three runners in the top five.
Hillsboro Cross Country
For a while, it looked as if Montgomery County may have a stranglehold on the top three spots as Hillsboro’s Sierra Compton was out in front with Fenton and Eiting before she had to drop out due to health reasons.
While Compton’s withdrawl kept Hillsboro from having a team score, the Toppers put up some of their best times of the season on the picture perfect morning in Piasa.
Avery Smith ran a 26:45 to finish 21st, while Meagan White was just behind her in 23rd with a time of 27:38. Allie Kuhns and Presley Smith rounded out the Hillsboro lineup, finishing 32nd and 35th with times of 30:44 and 32:14.
Both Hillsboro and Litchfield will be at the Belleville Althoff Regional on Saturday, Oct. 23, with race time set at 10 a.m. for the girls and 10:30 a.m. for the boys. The top seven teams and top five individuals not on an advancing team will then move on to the Trenton Wesclin Sectional on Saturday, Oct. 30.
October 15 at Piasa
Girls Team Results: 1. Gillespie 40; 2. Litchfield 44; 3. Staunton 58; 4. Southwestern 91; 5. Carlinville 93.
Girls All-Conference: 1. Myka Fenton (Litchfield) 20:23; 2. Kylee Eiting (Litchfield) 21:08; 3. Brynn Baker (Gillespie) 21:19; 4. Erika Gill (Gillespie) 21:40; 5. Delanie Ulrich (Litchfield) 21:52; 6. Brooke Kinder (Staunton) 22:31; 7. Lexi Hester (Staunton) 22:52; 8. Lexi Pfeiffer (Staunton) 22:58; 9. Katie Polo (Gillespie) 23:11; 10. Emily Lowis (Southwestern) 23:12; 11. Mia Brawner (Gillespie) 24:11.
Litchfield Girls: 1. Myka Fenton 20:23; 2. Kylee Eiting 21:08; 5. Delanie Ulrich 21:52; 18. Harlee Traylor 26:11; 20. Joelle Hughes 26:13; 29. Emma Hughes 29:04.
Hillsboro Girls: 21. Avery Smith 26:45; 23. Meagan White 27:38; 32. Allie Kuhns 30:44; 52. Presley Smith 32:14.
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