With the East Division rivals Blue Ridge Yellow Jackets on the horizon Sept. 25 in Lakeside, Coach Chuck Hardt will be pouring over the cross country team's past performances to determine both varsity and junior varsity rosters for the competition.
A set of results he most likely will pay attention to is a six-way meet that was held at Payson Golf Course Sept. 8. Several of the teams there -- including the Yellow Jackets -- will be in attendance at the Blue Ridge meet.
One athlete that could make the jump from jayvee to varsity is freshman Garret Quotskuyva. In Payson, he won the jayvee meet covering the 3.1 mile course in 20:23.
His time would have placed him as Payson's fourth-best runner had he been entered in the varsity run.
Payson entries who turned in a better time than the freshman speedster included Jeremy Lee (18:08), Nolan Blalock (19:46) and Joe Sanchez (19:58). Lee was fourth, Blalock 12th and Sanchez 14th in the varsity run.
Like their male counterparts, the Lady Longhorn jayvee team boasted of runners who Hardt might promote to varsity for Blue Ridge and other meets.
They include Leigh Ann Haynes, Amy Davis and Lily Flores.
In Payson, Hayes finished first (23:13), Davis second (23:47) and Flores third (14:11) to lead a contingent of jayvee runners that copped the top-six slots.
Payson's best varsity runner, Stephanie Ray was fourth over the same course in 23:37.
In addition to varsity and jayvee competition at the Payson meet, an inaugural middle school race was held that drew teams from Whiteriver, Blue Ridge and Rim Country Middle School.
In the girls run, which covered a 1.6 mile course, RCMS's Jenny Cohen out dueled teammate Kari Hardt for the individual championship. Cohen finished in 10:42, Hardt in 10:46. Whiteriver (29) won the girls title, RCMS (29) was second on a tie breaker and Blue Ridge (74) trailed.
In the boys scoring, Blue Ridge (21) ran its way to the title over runner-up RCMS (34). Alchesay did not enter the required number of runners to earn a team score.
JV Boys: First, Fountain Hills, 34; second, Blue Ridge, 47; third, Holbrook, 48; fourth, Show Low, 82
JV Girls: First, Payson, 15; second, Alchesay, 48; third, Fountain Hills, 80; fourth, Holbrook, 104
Varsity Boys: First, Alchesay, 34; second, Fountain Hills, 80; third, Payson, 23; fourth, Blue Ridge, 103
Varsity Girls: First, Show Low, 48; second, Alchesay, 57; third, Snowflake, 83; fourth, Payson, 95
Varsity Girls: 4th, Stephanie Ray, 23:37; 10th, Mary Mendoza, 24:33; 18th, Katrina Beeler, 25:35; 26th, Samantha Meyers, 27:13; 37th, Brandyce Engler, 31:19
Varsity Boys: 4th, Jeremy Lee, 18; 12th, Nolan Blalock, 46; 14th, Joe Sanchez, 58; 23rd, Wesley Sprinkle, 32; 30th, John Salazar, 38
JV Girls: 1st, Leigh Anne Haynes, 23:13; 2nd, Amy Davis, 23:47; Lily Flores, 24:11; 5th, Shaina Vaught, 24:54; 6th, Michelle Closs, 25:07; 31st, Sarah Hummer, 39; 34th, Cassandra McNac, 58; 36th, Jennifer Boyd, 32:12; 37th Kira Tiffany, 33:07
JV Boys: 1st, Garrett Quotskuyva, 20:23; 8th, Daniel Davis, no time; 24th, Josh Sprinkle, no time; 31st, Chaz Taylor, no time
Middle School Girls: 1st, Jenny Cohen, 10:42; 2nd, Kari Hardt, 10:46; 5th, Jana Knighton, 12:25; 10th, Sheyla Hall, 13:48; 11th, Sharlie Hall, 13:50; 15th, Hillari Hardt, 14:11
Middle School Boys: 2nd, Joe Behrens, 10:20; 7th, Harley Tiffany, 11:20; 9th, Mark Taylor, 11:46; 10th, Ian Binney, 11:46; 13th, Troy Marrs, 11:54; 15th, Matt Johnson, 12:05; 16th, Michael Daniels, 12:32; 22nd, David Cluff, 13:50; 29th, Dustin Ammann, 17:14