By David Knox, Sports Editor
TRUSSVILLE – The Hewitt-Trussville boys cross country team, paced by John Ngaruiya’s second-place finish in the boys championship run, posted its best result ever in the Carrollton Orthopedic Invitational in Georgia.
The Huskies came in fifth in the 29-team field. Ngaruiya’s finish was also the best in school history at Carrollton. He ran a 16:56.48 in the 5000-meter event. Matthew Cashin of Leon High School ran 16:50.47.
Other Huskies runners and finishes among the 273 boys who competed: Austin Atkinson (25th), Josh Jenkins (52nd), Carson Spruiell (61st), Thomas Wolfe (84th), Aaron Dykes (104th), Graham Bianchi (135th).
In the boys 6A-7A run, Micah Smith led the Huskies with 19:22.23 times for 36th place. Mac Brooks, Andrew Smith, Christian Holley, Kent Glover, Caleb Knox and Timothy Ngaruiya also competed. The Huskies finished ninth.
In the girls championship race, Hewitt came in 19th in the 26-team field. Sydney Hall led Hewitt with a 28th-place finish. Other Lady Huskies and their finishes in the 224-runner field: Brooke Atkinson (88th), Ellie Kate Jones (118th), Olivia Bland (146th), Sarah Peterson (*171st), Emily McMahon (187th).
In the girls 6A-7A run, Helena Steen ran 24:14.44 for 35th place. Others Lady Huskies competing were Ashleigh Hicks, Ariana White, Chandler Holley, Olivia Calma and Aliyah Brown. Hewitt finished 10th.
The season opened in Alabaster for the Huskies.
Hewitt-Trussville’s John Ngaruiya took first place in the Warrior 2-Mile Invitational hosted by Thompson High at Veterans Park on Sept. 1.
The senior covered the distance in 10:19.94 to finish ahead of three Mountain Brook runners, Charlie Slaughter, Gram Denning and Hunter Harwell. His efforts helped the Huskies to a second-place finish in the meet, trailing Mountain Brook. The Spartans scored 24 points and the Huskies 44, with host Thompson (80), John Carroll Catholic (98) and Pelham (150) completing the field.
The Huskies’ Austin Atkinson finished sixth. Josh Jennings (12th), Thomas Wolfe (13th), Carson Spruiell (15th), Aaron Dykes (24th) and Andrew Smith (27th) also scored for Hewitt.
The Hewitt-Trussville girls, led by sophomore Sydney Hall’s ninth-place finish, took third place in the girls 2-mile run. Hall ran the distance in 13:31.74. Other girls who scored included Brooke Atkinson (23rd place), Hannah Brien (35th), Olivia Bland (38th), Emily McMahon (40th), Helena Steen (41st) and Sarah Peterson (44th).
Mountain Brook also took the girls team top spot, with 18 points. John Carroll (50), Hewitt (76) and Thompson (96). Pelham only ran three girls and did not qualify for team scoring.
The following Thursday, Sept. 8, Hewitt-Trussville and Clay-Chalkville competed in the Gardendale Invitational 5K with junior varsity runners.
The Huskies nipped host Gardendale 56 to 58. Clay did not place in team scoring because the Cougars had only three runners.
Ethan Greene led the Huskies with a fifth-place finish and Matthew Stovall finished 10th. Depth was the key to the win, as Huskies Zac Morgan, Sonu Patel and Brandt Gooden came in 14th, 15th and 16th and freshman Strickland White followed at 18th. Freshman Ayrton Purdy rounded out the scoring at 22nd.
Clay-Chalkville’s Devan Cook was 45th, Alex Rowan was 56th and Zachary Jones was 68th.
In the girls 5K, Gardendale took first and Hewitt came in fourth. Clay-Chalkville did not have any girls compete.
Kylee Glenn led the Lady Huskies with a 23rd-place finish, followed by Sarah Cannon (25th), Olivia Braswell (28th), Olivia Kilpatrick (30th), Emma Williamson (35th), Maegan Mason (38th) and Olivia Ndegwa (45th) to round out the scorers.