For Starkville Daily News
The Starkville High School cross country teams participated in the Bulldog Invitational at the Mississippi Horse Park Saturday, recording faster times than it did at the Twilight meet in Memphis.
The varsity boys took first-place honors over Clinton and Madison Central, two teams that run strong year after year. Clinton is the defending Class 6A champions. The top five Jackets who earned points were Joseph MacGown (second, PR: 16:42), Kamau Bostic (fifth, 17:26) Damien Grady (seventh, PR: 17:32), Ethan Musser (11th, PR: 18:18) and Stuart Woomer (13th, PR: 18:33).
The Lady Jackets finished in second place behind Madison Central and also had improved times from the Twilight meet.
"They ran with a lot of heart and pushed through the hill and the stiff competition," SHS coach Caroline Woomer said. "The girls did a great job running as a team, encouraging one another and pulling each other along."
Kate Mattox finished first overall with a time of 15:34, followed by Walker Mattox (fourth, 16:17), Abigail Arinder (11th, 17:03), Shanika Musser (14th, 17:19) and Mary Elizabeth Stringer (26th, 18:17).
Woomer said she, along with assistants Chris Barnett and Joe MacGown will continue to train the teams as it looks ahead to the Jessie Owens Meet on Oct. 1.
"Jessie Owens is a well known meet with teams from all over the U.S.," Woomer said. "Our runners will have an opportunity to run with the elite runners from the neighboring states. We celebrate our victories today and begin training for our next meet (today)."