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Cavaliers run in the rain

On a misty, messy Saturday afternoon in Carrollton, the top Class AA runners in the state got together for one last cross-country race.

A season that began in August culminated with Saturday’s state meet, with hundreds of runners testing themselves on a challenging 3.1-mile course.

Five of those runners were from Callaway High, and they earned a spot at state by finishing third in Region 5-AA.

The Cavaliers finished 25th as a team, and they were led

by sophomore Lane Thompson, who finished 36th overall with a time of 18 minutes, 59 seconds.

While conditions were far from optimal because of the rain, which at times during the race was heavy, Thompson was ready.

“I knew eventually I was going to have to run in the rain,” Thompson said. “I try to run in the rain honestly whenever I can. If we have a day off and you have to run by yourself, I try to run in the rain to just make me stronger. I know some go inside and run in the treadmill, and it probably caught them off guard.”

Saturday’s performance capped a successful season for Thompson that included a third-place showing in the Region 5-AA meet at Heard County.

“He runs six days a week, rain or shine,” Callaway head coach Shonna Yawn said of Thompson.

Thompson realizes there are no short cuts to being a successful cross-country runner, and he embraces the grind.

“There’s no way to cheat it,” Thompson said. “You’ve got to work.”

Callaway’s second finisher during the state meet was Desmon Nunley (22:01), and he was followed by Colton Alsobrook (22:03), Avery Brooks (23:14), Colton Cline (27:07) and Maurice Delaney (29:19).

“It’s always good to make it back to state,” Yawn said. “It showed that they worked hard to get where they are. I had three seniors this year, so we’ll regroup next year, and hopefully Covid will calm down and that’ll make a big difference for our team. We had several that went through quarantine. You miss practice and meets throughout the season and still make it to state, that says something.”

Callaway only had two girls participate in the region meet, so it was unable to participate at state.

Vivian Streiff and Kayle Flores finished 11th and 12th, respectively, at the region meet.

“They did well,” Yawn said. “Vivian, she’s a senior, but she made a couple of (personal records), so we’ll look to rebuild for next year, and hope things are a little more normal.”

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