Saturday was the first time in four years Rome High’s cross country team had ran in the Darlington Cross Country Festival, but the Wolves certainly made their presence known.
The Rome girls finished sixth overall while the boys came in 19th on Darlington’s home course among a strong field of some of the toughest competitors in the state. Rome’s finishes put them top among local team and displayed the type of progress coach Luis Goya is expecting to see at this point in the season.
“It was a challenge today, and to compete the way we did I’m pleased,” Goya said. “We have three weeks until region and this was a great assessment of where we are.”
In the girls’ race, White County took first place with a total of 52 points while Decatur’s Haley Rose finished first individually with a time of 19:06. Rome’s Sarah Glick finished 40th overall with a time of 21:22.
The Lady Wolves finished with three runners in the top 50, with Nora Bailey and Janet Hartman running right behind Glick. Goya took pride in how a veteran runner like Glick could lead the team to an impressive finish.
Grayson won as a team in the boys’ race, while Northview’s Michael Smith finished first with a time of 16:13. The first local runner to come in was Rome’s Sam Pierce, finishing 53rd with a time of 17:58.
The Darlington girls finished 19th as a team and the boys finished 25th overall. Maggie Humphries led the Lady Tigers in 45th place with a time of 21:31, while John Prosser Deaton finished 88th with a time of 18:32 in the boys’ race.
In a meet featuring more than 40 schools, Darlington coach Brian Cross was happy with how his team defended its course.
“I really liked the way we hung in there, considering the schools that were here,” Cross said. “We’ve had some great races so far, and we are where we need to be this late in the season.”
The Rockmart girls finished 20th as a team and the boys placed 29th as a unit. Luke Robinson led the Jackets in 144th place with a time of 19:29, while Allie Sproull led the Lady Jackets in 61st place with a time of 22:03.
The Coosa girls finished 31st as a team and the boys’ team finished 28th. Carrah Arrant led the Lady Eagles getting 148th place with a time of 23:58 and Chris Spate finished 128th with a time of 19:09 for the Eagles.