The Cleburne cross country program welcomed more than 50 schools from all across Texas to town on Friday for the 2019 Buzz Run.
From a host perspective, Cleburne head coach Alicia Johnson said the enormous meet, held at the Cleburne Sports Complex, was a success.
“The Buzz Run went really well and was a great success,” Johnson said. “The Buzz Run is an event that asks a lot from a lot of different people. It takes a village, and I’m proud to have the village we have. We got a lot of compliments in all departments: course support, how well the course was marked, finish line workers, course monitors and workers, the amount of parent support, and how awesome and attentive our student athletic trainers and trainers were. There were 51 teams in attendance this year.”
Leading the way for Cleburne was senior Maggie Marshall, who finished third in the varsity girls race with a time of 18:44.46. Marshall has led the Lady Jacket cross country program since her freshman year and is off to another good start for her senior campaign this season.
“Maggie did awesome at the Buzz Run on Friday,” Johnson said. “She ran strong and ran confident. As a junior, she made a state appearance last year and finished 20th. My hopes for her are to make a state appearance and advance in her overall standing. She’s a tremendous leader on and off the course. She has taken the new runners and the young runners under her wing and really helps them. Maggie is a lot of fun to coach, and even more fun to watch compete.”
The Lady Jackets finished eighth out of 23 teams in the varsity girls final tally — district foe Midlothian won the varsity girls meet, followed by Mansfield Legacy and Boswell.
Cleburne freshman Karman Wright placed 30th overall with a time of 20:53.86; sophomore Aliya Carrizales came in 33rd at 20:54.60; and senior Morgan Brinkley was in the top 100 with a time of 22:46.34 for 96th place.
On the boys’ side, Cleburne was led by senior Tommy De La Rosa, who finished 67th with a time of 17:42.40, while senior Truett Childress finished 75th at 17:46.23; and senior Rylan Light came in 96th at 18:18.37.
As a team, the Jackets finished 16th out of 31 teams. Argyle won the varsity boys meet with a team score of 154, six ahead of second-place Duncanville. Finishes for district foes for Cleburne include Midlothian at fifth, Waco University at sixth, and Corsicana at seventh.
“Thus far, the kids are doing great,” Johnson said. “We have a very young team, and a lot of new runners to the sport. Every meet is a checkpoint with our end goal in mind. Cross country is a tough sport. All of these kids have run before, but learning how to race a 5k is tough. I’m proud of the effort they put forth daily and the amount of determination they race with weekly.”
Up next for Cleburne is the Metroplex Challenge at 7:30 a.m. Thursday in Haltom City.