MOULTON, Ala. - Jesse Owens said, “We all have dreams, but in order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline, and …
MOULTON, Ala. - Jesse Owens said, “We all have dreams, but in order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline, and effort.”
“That quote along with the word ‘FINISH’ was worn on our young men’s and women’s cross country team shirts as both teams competed with big hearts and achieved even greater results,” said Bayside Academy cross country head coach Joe Swagart.
Looking to extend his team’s win streak to five meets and having recently been crowned Baldwin County champs and AHSAA Sectional champs, Swagart said that his girls’ team competed at state under the added pressure of being the favorites.
“Our women started strong and had placed themselves in position to win by the 1.5 mile mark. As our team continued to move up and finish strong, nothing would deny our team the top spot,” he added.
What was even more impressive was freshman runner Annie Midyett’s individual victory with a time of 18:59, a new school record and the 20th fastest time in the AHSAA this fall.
Freshman Catherine Doyle and eighth-grader Shelby Fargason each earned All-State Honors, finishing fifth and tenth respectively. Freshman Presley Putnam, senior Leah Jha, freshmen Virginia McCrory and Amelia Wells finished out the Admirals’ top seven with each running a seasonal best time and securing the team win.
“Sophomore Ramey Webb and freshmen Madeline Dudley and Molly Hagan also represented the team well,” Swagart said. “Bayside Academy women scored 51 points with second place White Plains scoring 86 points. Our women’s top five 5K average of 20:26 is the fastest ever in school history.”
Bayside boys win state with fastest time in school history
On paper, the American Christian boys team was favored to beat the Bayside Academy Admirals by more than 60 points.
“However, our strong start put us in position to compete by the 1.5 mile mark,” Swagart said. “As the race progressed, our men held strong to their positions. It was in the final 600 meters that our boys made their moves.”
Bayside junior Ty Postle moved into second overall from sixth, junior John Thomas Neill fought hard and held onto 12th, junior Ashton Rowland moved up into 19th passing more than six competitors, senior Jackson Olsen and junior Trey McKean finished 22nd and 25th.
“All of our men finished the season with a season best,” Swagart added. That included Kyle Cooper, Caleb Crum, Jack Koch and Luke White.
“What was supposed to be an easy win for ACA turned into a nine-point defeat,” he said with Bayside scoring 73 points to runner-up ACA’s 82. “Our men’s top five 5K average of 17:15 is the fastest ever in school history. These titles are the fourth and second in school history for our women and men respectively.”
The Lady Admirals cross country teams have won state titles in 2005, 2012 and 2013. The Admirals’ previously lone state championship title trophy in boys’ cross country before this one was won in 2007. Because of the private school competitive balance factor, both the boys and girls cross-country programs will compete in 5A after the next AHSAA reclassification.