Parra, Lions take top spot
Special to the LPR
The Lockhart Boys Varsity Cross Country team won the 17-5A District Championship on Thursday at Walter E. Long Lake Park in Austin.
The victory is the third consecutive district championship for the Lion harriers and the 26th title in the past 34 seasons of cross country at Lockhart High School.
In the district team standings, Lockhart led the way with 28 points, Austin Anderson finished second with 60 points, Austin LASA was third with 63 points, Austin McCallum placed fourth with 95 points, Austin Navarro placed fifth with 128 points, while Austin Crockett came home in sixth with 158 points. Austin Reagan and Austin Travis failed to have teams with five runners, which is necessary for a team score.
Senior Anthony Parra led the way for Lockhart as he captured the individual championship. Parra is the 19th Lockhart Lion to win the individual title since 1989, when David Hughes first won the individual championship.
The irony was that both runners won at the same location, along the shores of Decker Lake.
Lockhart’s Robert Uhr was the last Lockhart Lion Varsity Boys to win the individual district title prior to last Thursday. Uhr won the 2012 District Championship, then the following week won the Regional Championship, and the week after that finished as the State Runner-up, as he lost individual State Championship by less than a half second.
Parra covered the very soggy 3.1 mile (5,000 meter) course in a fine time of 16 minutes and 37 seconds, and in the process beat the district runner-up from Anderson High School by just over 11 seconds, or by about 60 meters.
“I thought Anthony ran a smart race, he made a strategic surge around the mile mark and never looked back,” head coach Scott Hippensteel said. “I think it’s always a good thing when we have the individual winner of the race, our other runners get inspired and push just that much harder to make sure all that hard work up front doesn’t go to waste.”
Junior James Franco and Sophomore Zeke Sanchez left no doubt that Lockhart was on its way to the team championship, as they finished third and fourth with outstanding times of 17:06, and 17:22 respectively.
Senior Matt Flores finished as the number four runner on Thursday as he placed a solid seventh overall in 17:40.
Freshman Anthony Daniels climbed into the fifth position for the first time in his short career as he finished 13th in 18:47.
“I was really proud of Anthony today, he stepped up when he saw our normal 5th man Carlos Terrazas suffering with a stomach cramp,” Hippensteel said. “That’s the way it’s been all season, when one guy isn’t having a great day, another runner will step up, and do what it takes for the team to be successful.”
Sophomores Carlos Terrazas and Cole Frey finished as the 6th and 7th runners on varsity for the Lions. Terrazas placed 16th in 19:13, and Frey finished 23rd in 19:51.
The Lockhart Junior Varsity finished as the District Runner-up to Anderson High School. In the Junior Varsity team standings Austin Anderson won with 24 points, Lockhart placed second with 36 points, Austin Navarro finished a very distant third with 98 points, Austin McCallum came home in fourth with 118, just two points ahead of fifth place Austin LASA with 120 points.
Lockhart Senior Angel Aguilar was the JV District Runner-up, as he finished in 19 minutes and 6 seconds. Senior Kevin Francisco finished a strong fourth in 19:35. Sophomore Griffen Mason finished as the third Lockhart runner as he placed 6th in 19:47. Senior Edgar Bustos was the fourth Lion to finish in 13th place with a time of 20:42. Finally Junior Santiago Ayala completed the team scoring as he placed 14th in 21:08.
Other Junior Varsity runners included Senior Andrew Ortiz, Senior Jorge Lopez, Senior Jorge Olvera, Sophomore Reagan Bliss, Junior Eric Hernandez, and Sophomore Josh Cruz.
“I couldn’t be any prouder of our Junior Varsity kids, they are unselfish, and do whatever they need to do to help our program.” “These guys are the reason our Varsity runners are so good, they are the foundation of our success.”
The Lockhart Freshman Boys won the team championship with a perfect score of 15 points. The Lockhart runners finished first, second, third, fourth, and fifth.
Juaguin Cardona was the Freshman Individual Champion as he ran the wet, and muddy two mile course in 13 minutes and 44 seconds. Joseph Phares finished second in 14:54, Enrique Alvardo placed third in 15:12, Nathaniel Hernandez was fourth in 15:35, and Lewis Robedeau finished fifth in 16:05. “I am so proud of the Freshmen, they did a great job.”
The Lockhart Varsity will now advance to the Region III, Regional Championship on Monday, October 25th at Kate Barr Ross Memorial Park in Huntsville, Texas.
Footnotes: Thank you to all of those who have supported the team this fall. Thank you to the Lockhart Boys Soccer and Basketball coaches who helped fill out our Junior Varsity and Freshmen teams this fall.