Teens Take Top Honors In Race

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Longhorn cross-country team members dominated the town of Payson-sponsored Monsoon 5K, sweeping the first three places in the 96-runner field.

David Cluff led the charge to the finish line touring the 3.1-mile Green Valley Park course in 17:59.

"It wasn't my best time, but at least I won," he said after crossing the finish line.

In the victory Aug. 13, Cluff out ran cross-country team member Carlan Pontious, who finished second in 18:06.

Pontious might have fared better had he not suffered a bad fall in the early portions of the race. Pontious said the mishap occurred after he struck a post while making a turn.

In the final 400 yards of the race, Pontious closed a gap Cluff had built, but approaching the finish line, Cluff pulled away.

Third place honors were earned by Payson High School junior Carlos Lopez in 18:56.

Fourth place was won by Robert Marsh, 40-49 age group, PHS senior Tommy Ashby was fifth in 20:44 and, turning in a time of 20:45, Josh Frewen was sixth.

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Jennifer Dougherty's tag is removed after finishing first in the women's division of the Monsoon 5K run.

The top-three runners were members of the 13-19-years age group.

In the women's division, some of the Rim Country's veteran runners did not compete choosing instead to train for upcoming marathons and bike races.

The women's winner Jennifer Dougherty was clocked in 23:15.

Angelita Whatley (23:28) was second and Lady Longhorn cross-country team member Lana Clubb third (24:07).

Although the traditional rain showers didn't fall during the 5K, the course remained wet and soggy from monsoon rains from the day before.

Before the start, Dan Basinski -- who led the runners through the course on his mountain bike -- told the field there would be a few changes in the course due to puddles and wash-aways.

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