The Hilton Head Prep girls cross country team finished fifth Saturday in the SCISAA Class 3-A championships at Heathwood Hall in Columbia, while junior Sarah Garratt finished less than two seconds from winning the individual title.
Sydney Hazel of Pinewood Prep came in with a time of 19 minutes, 40.5 seconds in the 5-kilometer race, with Garratt closing fast and crossing the line 1.96 seconds later.
"Of course Sarah was disappointed, but this will simply motivate her for next season," Prep coach Liz Nash said. "Sarah's had a phenomenal season."
Ashley Hall won the girls team title. Pinewood Prep took second.
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Jill Brunori was the second Hilton Head Prep girl to finish, placing 17th in the field of 78 runners. Eighth-grader Laurel Woerheide was 23rd.
On the boys side, Hilton Head Prep placed seventh. Porter-Gaud was first and Heathwood Hall second.
Taylor Calamari led the way for Prep's boys, taking 26th in a time of 19:15.
Porter-Gaud freshman Brent Demarest won the boys race in a time of 16:19, more than 35 seconds ahead of the closest competitor.
Ten of Hilton Head Prep's 14 runners at Saturday's meet finished with personal-best times. The Dolphins only graduate four seniors, boys and girls combined.
"I'm excited about next year," Nash said. "Everybody's excited."
SCISAA Class 3-A state meet
Saturday, at Columbia
Top team scores -- 1. Ashley Hall 55, 2. Pinewood Prep 72, 3. Cardinal Newman 85, 4. Heathwood Hall 90, 5. Hilton Head Prep 104.
Hilton Head Prep -- 2. Sarah Garratt 19:42.46, 17. Jill Brunori 21:33.00, 23. Laurel Woerheide 21:50.87, 27. Marian Matney 22:05.62, 42. Abby Kandel 22:56.24, 46. Kate Brunori 23:20.62, 55. Taylor Clark 24:09.81.
Top team scores -- 1. Porter-Gaud 23, 2. Heathwood Hall 64, 3. Wilson Hall 86, 4. Pinewood Prep 114, 5. Cardinal Newman 164, 6. Laurence Manning 172, 7. Hilton Head Prep 184
Hilton Head Prep -- 26. Taylor Calamari 19:15.87, 32. Timmy Ochsner 19:30.15, 38. Jake Post 19:49.93, 43. Franklyn Bakala 20:00.93, 46. Ben Ranney 20:07.12, 50. Jackson Richard 20:17.12, 78. Marvin Rodriguez 22:13.34
Class 3-A Lower State qualifying: A mere formality, the Hilton Head High and Bluffton boys and girls assured themselves of a place at next weekend's Class 3-A state meet by finishing among the top 12 teams in Saturday's Lower State qualifying meet at the Sandhills Research Center in Columbia.
The Hilton Head High boys and girls both placed first. The Seahawks were two points from having a perfect score in the boys event.
Bluffton's girls took second and the boys were third. Jennifer Giles led the way for the Bobcat girls, finishing eighth in a time of 20 minutes, 45 seconds. Anthony Vecchio was the first non-Seahawk to finish in the boys race, taking fifth in a time of 16:35.
The state meet -- which also will be held at Sandhills -- gets under way at 8 a.m. Saturday with the Class 3-A girls. The boys race is scheduled for 8:30 a.m.
Class 3-A Lower State qualifying
Saturday, at Columbia
Top team scores -- 1. Hilton Head High 36, 2. Bluffton 77
Bluffton -- 8. Jennifer Giles 20:45, 13. Casey Witkowski 21:16, 14. Scottie House 21:16, 17. Madison Putich 21:25, 25. Alex Bailey 21:53, 31. Lea Tierney 22:23, 37. Taylor Klitzsch 22:53
Top team scores -- 1. Hilton Head High 17, 2. Chapin 50, 3. Bluffton 102
Bluffton -- 5. Anthony Vecchio 16:35, 12. Demetrius Smalls 17:18, 26. Harris Reeves 17:53, 29. Josh Tierney 17:59, 30. Landon House 17:59, 34. Clark Sinclair 18:14