Grantsville junior Porter Whitworth said he still had a little extra to give after winning Wednesday’s Region 13 championship cross-country meet at the Cottonwood Complex in Salt Lake County.
That’s a scary thought for the rest of Class 3A, considering he still beat Morgan’s Carson Wilkins by nearly 14 seconds even while holding something back. He also just missed his own personal-best by less than four seconds, recording a time of 14 minutes, 57 seconds.
“I let Carson set the pace and waited for the last mile,” Whitworth said. “I was kind of laying back and waiting for the end to start picking it up. I know I can do a lot more.”
Whitworth is considered among the favorites entering next week’s Class 3A championship meet at Sugar House Park in Salt Lake City, along with Wilkins and Richfield’s Hayden Harward. That trio has been battling for the past two years in cross country and the distance events during the track and field season, and that has Whitworth motivated going into next Wednesday.
“Training this summer, Hayden Harward was in my head all the time,” Whitworth said. “He won the 2-mile, 1-mile and 800 (meters) last year, so in my head, it was the same name over and over again when I was training.”
Whitworth’s win led Grantsville’s boys to a second-place finish in the team standings behind Morgan. Seth Beckett finished third overall in 15:58.3, with Caden Williams (ninth, 16:38.4), Jordan Wheeler (10th, 16:41.4) and Wyatt Teggins (13th, 16:53.5) rounding out the Cowboys’ scoring. Alex Mower (23rd, 18:31.7) and Tanner Wright (26th, 19:39.9) also ran well for Grantsville, but didn’t figure in the scoring.
Grantsville’s girls finished third in their race behind champion Morgan and runner-up Judge Memorial. The Cowboys were led by Lindsey Palmer, who finished 10th in 20:28.2, and Lyndee Limburg, who was 11th in 20:29.9. Sarah Kurtz finished 13th in 21:21.3, Rachel Barker was 17th in 21:38.7 and Desiree Garcia was 18th in 21:39.8. Erin Petersen (22:03.1) and Makayla Lear (23rd, 23:33.5) also competed for Grantsville.
Stansbury’s Josh Oblad made it look easy at times during Wednesday’s Region 11 championship race, taking a huge lead almost immediately on his way to a comfortable 13.8-second victory over runner-up Ayden Womack of Bonneville.
“I just decided I was going to go at right about 1 mile,” Oblad said. “I went down there and just started doing business. I knew they were still coming, but I decided to keep going.”
Oblad’s winning time of 15:02.9 was a personal-best, and also ranks as the third-fastest 3-mile time in Class 4A this season as of Thursday morning. He and his team have high expectations going into the Class 4A championship meet next Wednesday, where the Stallions will look to defend their state championship.
“I’m really looking forward to next week, and hoping to finish with a really good, top performance there,” Oblad said.
The Stallions held off Bonneville for the Region 11 title by placing all five of their scoring runners in the top 14 overall. Talmage Ricks was seventh in 15:47.9, followed by Nathan Winters in 11th in 16:01.9. Carson Belnap was 12th in 16:02.7 and Tyler Seeley was 14th in 16:07.3 to round out the scoring. Isaac Nelson (20th, 16:27.9) and Jeremy Ruebush (25th, 16:51.6) also competed for Stansbury.
Tooele’s boys finished fifth in the team standings. The Buffaloes were led by Teagun Palmer, who finished 13th in 16:04.9. Tyler Stewart was 23rd in 16:43.5, Joel Brown was 28th in 16:55.3, Parker Hansen was 32nd in 17:15.5 and Christopher Day was 34th in 17:19.9. Jared Downard (36th, 17:31.6) and Garrett Lawton (37th, 17:44.1) just missed scoring points for Tooele.
Stansbury’s girls edged Park City for second place behind a dominant Ogden team in their region championship event. Shelby Archer finished sixth overall for the Stallions in 18:46.6, with Brooke Call 10th in 19:06.2. Eliza Beazer (11th, 19:15.8), Katelin Chipman (17th, 19:35.1) and Elena Allen (20th, 19:52.5) were Stansbury’s other scoring runners, with McKenna Rogers (21st, 19:52.7) and Joelle Spilker (25th, 20:10.3) not far behind.
Tooele’s girls finished fifth, three points behind Bonneville for the final team spot in next week’s state meet. Jennifer Thomas led the Buffs with a 19th-place finish in 19:43.8. Makayla Komer was 22nd in 19:54.2, followed closely by teammates Grace Jenkins (23rd, 20:06.7), Holly Johansen (24th, 20:07.4) and Diana Messick (28th, 20:39.7). Mayling Jorgensen (32nd, 21:07.5) and Courtney Furniss (36th, 21:39.2) also took part in the region championship race for Tooele.