Winning the top two individual honors wasn't enough to lift the Longhorn boys cross country team to the championship of the 12-team Blue Ridge Invitational.
At the Sept. 27 run in Lakeside, the Horns compiled 39 points to finish hot on the heels of invitational champion Winslow (36). Compiling a tally of 117, bronze medalist Globe was a distant third.
For Payson, senior Tanner Morgan won the gold, touring the 5K course in 17:44. His greatest competition came from teammate Brian Langeliers, the runner-up, who was clocked in 17:51.
Dustin Rodgers (7th; 18:35), freshman Carlos Lopez (16th; 19:21), David Cluff (19th; 19:44) and Lance Chabot (27th; 20:10) also represented the Longhorns in the 60-runner field.
In the girls 10-team varsity competition, the Lady Longhorns (110) finished fourth behind Winslow (41), Round Valley (48) and Alchesay (73).
The Lady Horn cause in the meet was fueled by freshman Lauren Stewart who finished 10th in 22:59.
Other Payson runners included Alesha Huddlestun (12th; 23:14), Yanni Krehbiel (24th; 25:01), Sarah Agnes (37th; 26:26) and Molly Agnes (42nd; 27:33).
The field was made up of 52 runners.
The younger set
In the jayvee boys competition, the fledgling Horns nipped Winslow, 28-29, for the meet title.
Jeff Little paced the Payson jayvees, finishing second in 20:33.
Zach Belcher (6th; 21:26), Jonny Malloy (8th; 21:45), Bryson Addington (9th; 21:51), Ryan Hillegas (13th; 22:51), Eric Lammers (17th; 23:13), Troy Jenkins (18th; 23:13), Greg Lords (19th; 23:40), and Hunter Hardt (20th; 23:59) also competed for Payson.
The Lady Longhorn jayvees did not receive a team score because the team did not have the required number of runners.
Only Ashlee Koch (5th; 26:36), Hanna Lee (12th; 28:10), Krystal McRae (15th; 28:56) and Crystal Sprinkle (16th; 29:35) participated in the 27-runner field.