Blue Springs junior Stephen Mugeche and Lee’s Summit North senior Elizabeth Carpino won their respective cross country races in Saturday’s Suburban Big Six Championships at Lake Jacomo, and Carpino’s win led the Broncos to the team title.
Mugeche covered the course in 15 minutes, 56.8 seconds, more than 21 seconds ahead of runner-up Jason Fambrough from Raymore-Peculiar. Blue Springs finished sixth (129 points) and Blue Springs South fifth (123), trailing Liberty (38), Ray-Pec (45), Lee’s Summit North (65) and Lee’s Summit (117).
“We felt pretty good going in,” Blue Springs coach Frank Gallick said of Mugeche’s race. “He ran the course three weeks ago at our invitational, so the goal was to run it faster than that, and he did.
“He went our pretty quick. He set the tone pretty early and kept a steady pace the whole time. He looked like he was running within himself.”
Kyle Dean led North by finishing fifth in 16:36.8. Also scoring for the Broncos were Brian Green (seventh, 16:47), Brent Kilgore (14th, 17:21.1), Sam Stockman (18th, 17:36.1) and Derek Moores (21st, 17:47.8).
Zach Kelsay paced South by finishing 15th in 17:23.4, while Dalton Smith took 19th in 17:39.7. Finishing the Jaguars’ top five were Gabe Henks (25th, 17:58.1), Alex Slater (30th, 18:15.4) and Dominic Dempsey (36th, 18:45.4).
After Mugeche, Blue Springs had Vincent Kackley (26th, 17:59.6), Jourden Gilstorf (29th, 18:03.6), Thomas Hines (37th, 18:45.8) and Sid Hose (42nd, 19:29.4).
Carpino won the girls race 19:09.8, more than four seconds ahead of Liberty’s Madison Nasteff. Blue Springs South junior Grace Klausen was next after that top duo (19:49.1), edging North’s Jesse Dinkins (19:49.7) for third.
North also won the team title by the narrowest margin, nipping Liberty 48-49. Ray-Pec (56), South (102), Lee’s Summit (113) and Blue Springs (149).
Following Carpino and Dinkins, North had Danielle Rock in fifth (20:11.2), Mandi Murphy in 14th (20:46) and Kaylyn Gasser in 24th (21:13.8).
Rounding out South’s top five were Ashton Kenson (11th, 20:39.2), Jansynn Radford (28th (21:33.6), Kara Zweerink (31st, 21:43.9) and Cassie Brown (32nd, 21:51.1).
Maria Wendell was Blue Springs’ top finisher, taking 10th in 20:32.4. Completing the Wildcats’ top five were Emily Hubner (22nd, 21:03.5), Abby Fortino (44th, 23:34.5), Maddie Niemann (50th, 24:41.2) and Moriah Davis (51st, 24:43.9).
SUBURBAN MIDDLE SIX: Senior Cole Rockhold blistered across the Independence Middle School Complex course in a winning time of 15:36.87, defending his league title and leading the Truman boys to a second-place finish Saturday.
The Patriots totaled 43 points, while Park Hill South had a 2-3-5-6 top quartet to finish with 31 points. St. Joseph Central (77), Lee’s Summit West (81) and Park Hill (117).
Edgar Renteria (seventh, 16:31.83), Cedric Gibbs (eighth, 16:32.14) and David Frazier (10th, 16:40.65) also finished in the top 10 for the Patriots, while Jack Franklin was 17th in 17:14.67. Will Harmon and Landon Rogers finished 26-27 for the Patriots.
On the girls side, Truman took fifth with 141 points, trailing Lee’s Summit West (31), Park Hill South (58), St. Joseph Central (72) and Park Hill (75). Ruskin had no runners in either race.
West’s Kennadee Williams won in 19:00.29. Emery Staton was Truman’s top runner, finishing 20th in 21:32.79, followed by Connor Lauren in 25th (22:00.1). Jordan Stiers, Olyvia Jones and Gwen Greeley went 31-32-33.
SOUTHWEST INVITATIONAL: William Chrisman’s Elizabeth Straub won the girls race in 22:02, and both the Bears’ boys and girls teams took second at Monday’s meet.
Completing the top five for the girls were Angie Littlefield (fifth, 24:23), Hannah Boatman (11th, 27:27), Mana Kanaizumi (12th, 27:29) and Alliya Mayweather (13th, 27:57).
Anthony Wheeler paced the Chrisman boys by taking fourth in 19:05. He was followed by Caleb Michell (seventh, 19:59), McCain Brown (ninth, 20:11), Uly Steiner (10th, 20:57), Tanner Haynes (18th, 21:39) and Tim Paxton (19th, 22:36).