The Liberal cross country teams made the long haul to Hesston Thursday for the Swather Special. This year’s meet consisted of 52 schools from all across Kansas and had each classification represented. The Swather Special is set up a little differently than the normal cross country meet. Instead of varsity and junior varsity races, each runner competes only against their grade level and gender, so there are a total of eight races. For the scoring of the meet they take each race and add up the top 7 places for the boys and the top 5 for the girls. Each boy’s race was 5 kilometers in length, while all the girls ran 4 kilometers.
The freshman girls were the first race of the evening. Camryn Slatten was the lone runner to receive a medal for Liberal with an 8th place finish. Slatten’s time of 17:14 is also the 7th fastest time at Liberal High school since records have been kept. Other freshman runners included Yanelly Jurado, Sammantha Terrazes, Saw Ahmara, Shayanna Molina, Chloe Alling, Perla Morales, Claire Alling, and Rocio Hernandez.
The freshman boys race had four Liberal runners competing. Edgar Moreno medaled with a 9th place finish, followed by Junior Garcia, Issac Borunda, and Hunter Butler.
Running in the sophomore girls race were Kacie Mathews, Carolina Limon, Magaly Garcia, Kayla Tran, Angie Rodriguez, and Andrea Portillo.
The sophomore boys had four top twenty finishers receiving a medal. Emilio Tovilla finished the course in 17:55 good enough for 5th place. Greg McClurg finished 11th with a time of 18:18. Alex Chance was 15th in 18:36, and Ryan Doll was 19th place with a time of 18:49. The other sophomore runners were Jerry Torres, Erik Saenz, Richard Carmona, Zane Chance, Noe Sarabia, and Javier Romero.
Vanny Diaz medaled in the junior girls race as the 14th runner to cross the line, with a time of 17:32. Diaz was closely followed by teammates Kelly Ramirez, and Allyson Nondorf.
The junior boys took home three medals with Obed Quintana placing 10th, Luis Medina 13th, and Ivan Aleman 15th. Other Liberal runners were Luis Marenco, Edwin Pineda, Isreal Silva, and Alex Ely.
Mercy Perez led the Redskin seniors with an 8th place finish. Her time of 16:06 was a 14 second personal record. That time is the 2nd fastest time ran for the Lady Skins since 2008. The other senior girls were Madison Butler, Kim Francis, and Lesli Mendoza.
The senior boys were led by Sammy Obando. Obando finished in 3rd place and had a time of 16:47. Obando’s time moves him to 4th in the Liberal record books. Erving Altamirano was 9th, finishing the course in 17:39. Other runners competing were Omar Comacho, Juan Carlos Ocampo, Trevin Garcia, Johnny Gutierrez, Jared Fox, Rory Howard, Zach Ward, and Isaac Pineda.
After all the race scores were accumulated, the Lady Redskins ended up with an 8th place finish. The boys placed 3rd as a team behind defending state champions Bishop Carroll and Maize South. The Redskin cross country teams will travel to Hays next Thursday for the Hays High School Invitational, where they will compete against 19 other schools.