From staff reports
Beaufort High’s boys cross country team has seen one runner after another graduate to the collegiate level in recent years, but a phenom has led a thin Eagles squad back to the state meet.
Freshman Gavin Moore finished third in his heat and fourth overall with a 5K time of 16:43.82 at the SCHSL Class 3A state qualifier Saturday in Newberry, leading the Eagles to a seventh-place team finish to earn a spot in the state championship field this week.
Xzavier Lacefield was next across the line, finishing 43rd in 19:10.97, and Connor Eby (19:18), Andrew Caprio (19:24), and Ryli Corbin (19:47) weren’t far behind, helping the Eagles secure a seventh-place finish in their heat and a spot in the state championship field.
Battery Creek’s Sophia Felix and Whale Branch’s Jesse Richardson qualified as individuals, with Richardson winning his heat in 17:32.60 and posting the second-best time of the day in the Class 1A boys division.
Bridges Prep’s David McDivitt (19:06.83) and Elise Thompson (22:40.04) finished seventh and eighth in their heats in the Class 1A races but just missed qualifying, while Charlize Antia (22:40.96) paced Beaufort’s girls squad in 29th, and Aiden Northway (20:11.65) led the way for Battery Creek’s boys in 68th.
The SCHSL state championship meets are scheduled for Thursday and Friday in Columbia with the Class 1A boys race at 1:30 p.m. Thursday, the Class 3A girls race at 9 a.m. Friday, and the Class 3A boys at 9:30 a.m. Friday.