Last Tuesday was a successful day for the Stone Memorial High School cross country teams, as the girls placed third and boys had two top-10 finishers in the D-1 Region 3 Large School cross country championships at Cookeville.

The top three teams for the boys and girls go on to compete in the state meet in Nashville Saturday, Nov. 2. The top 10 runners in each race, regardless of how their team placed, qualified to attend the state meet individually.

On the girls’ side, SMHS had three runners place in the top 10. Sophomore Meghan Niles finished fourth overall at the race with a time of 20:58. Rookie runner Haley Suggs placed seventh for the Panthers posting a time of 22:20.

Emma Newcome placed 10th, running a time of 23:23. Taylor Bell finished fourth for the SMHS girls running a time of 26:09. She was followed by Natalie Stone (26:30), Ashley Hale (26:45), and Lillian Allred (28:10). The girls secured a third-place finish as a team, which qualifies them for the TSSAA state meet.

All of the SMHS boys posted strong times. Junior Cameron McDonald finished at 18:02 for the 5K race, finishing third overall. He was followed closely by junior Dennis Hutton who ran 18:12.

Luke Pettus finished third for the Panthers, running a time of 20:27. He was followed by Isaac Dodson (21:57), L.J. Grayson (22:23), Jackson Barnett (22:39) and Micheal Potter (23:40).

Freshman Payton Davis posted a season best running 25:23.

Although the boys did not qualify for the state meet as a team, McDonald and Hutton will advance to the state meet as individuals. The boys have had major improvements in their times since the first meet in September, and they finished with a very strong season.

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