STAFF WRITER JENNIFER FIERRO
Three Marble Falls High School runners advanced to the Class 5A state meet after finishing in the top 10 of individuals at the Class 5A Region III meet Oct. 22 in Huntsville.
Sophomore Bailey Goggans and juniors Jaden Johnson and Bryer Atkinson will represent Marble Falls at the state meet.
Atkinson and Johnson might have ran the most impressive races, while phenom Goggans continues to reset the bar for running success.
Both juniors had to fight to stay with their packs, head coach Chris Schrader said. With 600 yards to go, Schrader said he told Atkinson that the finish line was only 500 yards away and proudly watched the Mustang pass several runners to the end. He finished 22nd overall in 17 minutes 5.70 seconds.
“He passed about six people,” Schrader said. “They know it’s a first measure of discomfort. He picked off one kid, then another. He’s a very tough kid. He’s emotionally and mentally tough”
The Mustangs finished ninth overall as a team out of 24 squads. The top four teams and top 10 individuals not a member of the top four teams advanced to the state meet, which begins at 3:10 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 3, at Old Settler’s Park, 3330 E. Palm Valley Blvd. in Round Rock.
Schrader said the same of Johnson, who was 18th overall in 20:05.20.
“Jaden was tough from the get-go,” he said. “She was never out of the top group of qualifiers. She stuck her nose in the middle. It’s really nice to see her advance.”
There’s little left to say of Goggans, who posted the second-fastest time in the 800 meters in the spring en route to the Class 5A gold medal at the 2018 state meet. Goggans was fifth overall in 19:17.40 at the regional cross-country meet.
But Schrader did say that Goggans, who is more of a sprinter, is learning how to be a tremendous 5,000-meter runner.
“She’s learning to master this race,” he said. “This time next year, I think she’ll be a minute faster. She becomes more efficient. I don’t want to overdwell on technical stuff with her. She has a good attitude about competing. I think she’ll be fine.”
The Lady Mustangs finished 10th out of 23 teams in the overall standings.
The girls state meet begins at 2:30 p.m. Nov. 3 at Old Settler’s Park.
LLANO RUNNER ADVANCES
In Class 4A, Llano sophomore Anna Casey was fourth overall at the Class 4A Region IV meet with a time of 11:04.23 in the 2-mile race.
She will run at the state meet at 1:20 p.m. Nov. 3 at Old Settler’s Park.
CLASS 5A BOYS: Marble Falls – 22, Bryer Atkinson, 17:05.70; 62, Austin Flores, 18:03.20; 66, Alex Castelan, 18:06.90; 76, Devonte Torns, 18:21; 88, Eric Nickowski, 18:39.30; 123, Luis Rodriguez, 19:20.10
CLASS 5A GIRLS: Marble Falls – 5, Bailey Goggans, 19:17.40; 18, Jaden Johnson, 20:05.20; 60, Ambrie Lizcano, 21:33.80; 79, Jennifer Arreguin, 22:03.20; 99, Ashley Rios, 23:03.20
CLASS 4A GIRLS: Llano – 4, Anna Casey, 11:04.23; 40, Meredith Zyetz, 12:01.91