Athletes from schools in and around Floyd County came together this week to be recognized for their hard work throughout this past cross country season, and Rome High stood out among them.
The 2019 GoGo Running All-Area Cross Country Banquet saw Rome’s cross country program honored with the organization’s top high school awards at Thursday’s event at the Krannert Center at Berry College.
Rome junior Patrick Motes was named the Boys’ Runner of the Year, while senior Nora Bailey took home the Girls’ Runner of the Year title. Meanwhile, Rome head cross country coach Luis Goya was honored as the area’s Boys and Girls Coach of the Year.
This season was one of improvement and determination for the Rome High cross country teams.
The Wolves won their third straight Region 7-5A title and went on to finish fifth at the Class 5A state meet. The Lady Wolves took second at region after battling as close as they ever had with perennial power Woodland.
The Rome teams swept the City-County and Rome All-Area meets this season, with Bailey winning the girls’ overall title at both races, including setting a personal record at the Rome All-Area Championships with a time of 20:04.
Motes came in second overall at the region meet with a time of 16:40 and went on to place sixth overall at the state meet in Carrollton. He also was second at the Rome All-Area Championships.
Also honored were the previously announced members of the group’s All-Area Cross Country Teams and the area Middle School Runners of the Year, St. Mary’s Ben Owens and Armuchee Middle’s Marissa Kimple.
Girls’ All-Area first team selections are Rome’s Bailey, Lucia Loarca, Ashley Morales and Kaitlyn Stahl, Model’s Jessie Schroeder, Armuchee’s Shelby Green and Calhoun’s Ashley Hartness.
Boys’ All-Area first team selections are Rome’s Motes, Ryan Glass, Trace Harris and Gary Jones, Model’s Jordan Hellier and Simon Schabort, and Calhoun’s Felipe Barrios
This year’s banquet preceded the annual Rome Half Marathon, which begins Saturday morning at State Mutual Stadium. In addition to the 13.1-mile titular half marathon, the event — presented by GoGo Running and Redmond Regional Medical Center — includes a 5K as well.
The 2019 GoGo Running All-Area Cross Country Teams
GIRLSFIRST TEAMNora Bailey (Rome), Shelby Green (Armuchee), Ashley Hartness (Calhoun), Lucia Loarca (Rome), Ashley Morales (Rome), Jessie Schroeder (Model), Kaitlyn Stahl (Rome).
HONORABLE MENTIONEmily Bartleson (Rome), Malorie Bradfield (Rockmart), Tiffany Creel (Unity Christian), Anna Gibson (Calhoun), Maggie Hawkins (Darlington), Brisa Lopez (Calhoun), Elizabeth Peyton (Calhoun), Kate Scott (Darlington), Grace Stanley (Armuchee), Riley Triplett (Sonoraville).
MS RUNNER OF THE YEARMarissa Kimple (Armuchee)
BOYSFIRST TEAMFelipe Barrios (Calhoun), Ryan Glass (Rome), Trace Harris (Rome), Jordan Hellier (Model), Gary Jones (Rome), Patrick Motes (Rome), Simon Schabort (Model).
HONORABLE MENTIONDuncan Blankenship (Model), Dawson Brown (Trion), John Prosser Deaton (Darlington), Joey Kowalczewski (Gordon Central), Josh Martinez (Coosa), Tom Vincent (Pepperell), Christian Weatherby (Pepperell), Avery Wright (Rome), Tucker Wright (Rome), Davis Yeargen (Armuchee).
MS RUNNER OF THE YEARBen Owens (St. Mary’s)