BA XC 19
The Brentwood girls cross-country team found runner-up status in the state tournament Saturday at Percy Warner Park, while Brentwood Academy extended their girls cross country championship streak to two in a row.
 
In the Girls Large Division standings, Brentwood finished in second place, which was the best finish of all the Williamson County schools.
 
Independence girls finished fifth in the state, and Franklin finished tenth.
 
“I was pleased with them; they ran really well,” said Brentwood head cross-country coach Rob Pautienus. “It has been a challenging year for us, but having a team average running at 19:48 was solid.”
 
Paige High School’s junior cross country runner Leigh Walton was individual state runner up for the girls Large Division.
 
“I just wanted to come out and run the best I could,” said Walton. “It is great to compete against such amazing runners and be pushed by them.”
 
The Boys Large Division had an upset, as Brentwood placed ahead of Region champs, Franklin, for fourth place in state. Franklin finished sixth, and Ravenwood finished 14th.
 
“I have known all season that we have had a good team,” said Pautienus. “It was a matter of putting it all together at the same time, which we were not able to do in the region. Franklin is still very good and has tons of experience.”
 
The Division 2 Class A girls state championship concluded with Christ Presbyterian Academy at fourth place.
 
Battle Ground Academy had a fifth place finish as a team in the Boys Division 2 Class A. Trace Alexander had the fourth best time individually for the Wildcats.
 
In the Division 2 Class AA girls state championship, Brentwood Academy achieved their second consecutive title as a team.
 
“This is my first year coaching the girls,” said Brentwood Academy head coach Marshall Smith. “We have had a nice run of athletes and coaches. I have been able to just come in and try to keep it going.”
 
However, the Division 2 Class AA division was not so kind to Brentwood Academy. The Eagles finished fifth in state but snapped their five in a row championship run.
 
“Considering how young our guys are with only two seniors and one junior, along with three freshman and a sophomore, we did well,” said Smith. “It is tough on those young athletes, who have never won this race before. We were honestly hoping to be a little higher as a team, but I am proud of the way the guys ran. Hopefully we can build off of this.”
 
Fairview boys finished third in the Small School division for the state tournament.
 
Alyssa Andrea of Fairview was the girls overall individual winner for the small school division.  
 
This competition ended the season for cross county races for TSSAA. 
 
Photo: BA's girls XC team with their state banner. 

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