The Transylvania Times -

Brevard Makes History With Sweep At Regional XC Meet

 

October 29, 2018

The Brevard High School cross country team's run of dominance continued over the weekend, as the Blue Devils swept the boys' and girls' team regional titles for the first time in program history. Both teams will now compete for state titles this weekend at Kernersville. (Courtesy photo)

It may never go viral, but the #winforwill campaign is undefeated after Brevard swept the 2A West Regional titles in Swannanoa. The Blue Devils will now send both squads to the state finals next week.

On the boys' side, senior Will Coye's quest to qualify a full team to the cross country state meet had been a futile effort the past three years.

This year's team had a different look, and that was evident in the first mile when junior Dylan Sasser came up beside Coye.

Those two held the third (17:06) and fourth (17:08) positions from start to finish, with Coye taking top honors.

That gave Brevard an enviable cushion in the team scores, but it wasn't needed.

The emerging trio of freshman Abdi Green (15th), sophomore Graham Green (22nd), and freshman Knox Witherspoon (26th) sealed the deal quickly, as Brevard had their fifth runner in before runner-up Franklin had their third. Isaiah Lefler and Dominick Adolf will also compete at the state championships.

"You couldn't have asked for a better race from top to bottom," said head coach Philip Latter. "These guys have been talking about making Will's dream come true since the summer. To see it actually happen was just amazing. He's such a good leader, and that's started to rub off on guys like Dylan. That kid has made just an incredible jump. We would be a good team with the old Dylan, but the possibilities seem limitless now that he's turned this corner and taken all the underclassmen with him."

Brevard ended up scoring a low total of 70 points, less than half of runner-up Franklin's 145.

Draughn, Owen, Ashe, and Pisgah rounded out the qualifiers from the region.

The girls' race featured an expected duel between Brevard and Hendersonville.

The Bearcats had run an impressive conference race to keep it close with the Blue Devils, and regionals brought more of the same.

Once again Brevard's advantage was up front. Way in front, it turned out, as seniors Lillie Siniard and Alyssa Lefler assumed the lead after the mile mark with only Karina Coutler of Foard High still in contact.

Those three would battle until the final half-mile, when Coulter opened up a small gap on Lefler (second in 20:27).

Siniard closed well to hold on for third (20:46), with junior Madeline Dierauf mowing down the chase pack to also earn All-Region honors with a sixth-place finish (21:17), a career first.

That put three Blue Devils in front of Hendersonville's No. 1, but the Bearcats were coming.

Their next four runners would finish in front of sophomore Anderson McKibbon (20th – 22:17), with their five and six in front of freshman Emma Coye (38th – 23:15).

Ultimately, their depth couldn't match Brevard's firepower up front, and the Lady Devils won their second consecutive title by a score of 63 to 79.

Other qualifiers from the region were Franklin, Ashe County, and Smoky Mountain. Freshman Erin Huter and Anna Schrader will also compete next Saturday in Kernersville at the state championships.

"Watching our upperclasswomen put on a clinic up front was just amazing," said Latter. "Last year Lillie had a miserable time and was never in it – today she led a mile and finished third. Alyssa was sick last year; today she almost won the whole thing. Madeline is crushing it lately, Andy and Emma know how to take care of business, Erin ran great, Anna is a senior who earned this, and now we have our tickets punched. Both teams to state. It feels good. Really, really good."

 
 

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