The PTP girls cross country runners of the week

The PTP pick

Keleigh Scallon, Sr., Newsome

The top 10 girls runners at the Class 4A, District 12 meet were all from Newsome and Plant.

How this lead pack unfolded would determine the team champion and runnerup.

Keleigh Scallon did her part. 

The Newsome veteran emerged from that group with the lead and never relinquished it, finishing first in a season-best 18 minutes, 30.50 seconds. 

It made the difference as the Wolves were able to squeak by powerhouse Plant to win the team title, 27-29. 

The fans’ pick

Hailey Howard, Jr., Calvary Christian

By the time Hailey Howard reached the homestretch at the Class 2A, District 10 meet, she was running by herself. 

First place had long been a foregone conclusion. With no one to push her, the only challenge left was to beat the clock. 

Howard had recorded her personal best (19 minutes, 16.30 seconds) a month earlier at the Land O’ Lakes Invite. She did not surpass that time, but she came close, finishing in 19:24.40, nearly 48 seconds ahead of the rest of the field. 

Better still, the individual title made a difference in the team standings. The Warriors were champions by slimmest of margins, edging Berkeley Prep 57-58. 

Fans took notice. Howard received more than 45 percent of the votes (10,210) to beat out Newsome’s Keleigh Scallon, who had more than 39 percent (8,927).