By Michael Hicks
COLORADO SPRINGS — As Carson Hume collected his breath Oct. 26 after running in the 5A boys cross country state championship he had just one wish – to be on the medal stand. He was that close.
The Dakota Ridge senior, who just a year earlier finished 14th and six seconds away from placing all-state, was even closer this go-around. Hume finished 11th in 16 minutes, 55.1 seconds at the Norris-Penrose Event Center. He finished behind 10th-place finisher Paul Miller of Poudre by 0.5 seconds.
“I knew that I was close. I had a feeling the kid in front of me was probably ninth or 10th,” Hume said.
All things considered, however, Hume felt that he raced the challenging 3.1-mile course pretty well. Dakota Ridge, as a whole, accounted for itself quite nicely, senior Erin Renner said.
The boys team, although it took 22nd in a field of 25 with 460 points, made a 12th consecutive state appearance. The girls team, making its 11th appearance in 12 years, placed 18th out of 25 schools with 451 points. They may not have finished near the top, but they continued a tradition that dates back to the school’s earliest years.
“I think we did very well today. It was just a great race, a great way to finish my senior year with Colorado cross country,” said Renner, who will run at Fort Lewis next year. She was Dakota Ridge’s first female finisher, coming in 64th in 20:57.4.
Dakota Ridge’s girls team qualified for state after winning regionals. A group that consisted of five sophomores displayed promise for a bright future.
“It means so much. The fact that we got here by winning regionals is phenomenal. It’s the first time our girls have done something like that in a long time,” said Cayli Hume, who finished in 21:42.87.
Other finishers for the Lady Eagles were Mia Valerio (21:18.22), Marilyn Ortiz (22:03.87), Laurel Davis (22:22.17), Vanessa Gonzalez (22:29.17) and Natalie Gonzalez (23:01.27).
Columbine’s lone qualifier Maddy Smith came in 117th in 21:58.3, while Littleton’s girls team came in 25th with 711 points.
Other finishers for the Dakota Ridge boys were Bradley Carney (18:01.9), Cameron Mattson (18:33.9), Andrew Castagneri (18:35.6), Chris King (19:28.8), Ben Rowland (20:05.6) and Joe Berg (21:42).
Contact Michael Hicks at email@example.com or 303-933-2233, ext. 15.