• Freshman Nayeli Hernandez leaps over a hurdle after running more than 1.5 miles during the Santo Relay.

Cross country runners sweep Santos Relay

SANTO— The Breckenridge High School Cross Country Team seems primed for a breakout season after sweeping the competition during its only preseason event.

The Buckaroos and Lady Buckaroos finished first in all categories Saturday during the Santos Relay, which Breckenridge coach Kim Dieterich believes is an encouraging sign for the upcoming season.

“We told them ahead of time, ‘this is just a practice meet,’” Dieterich said. “We told them ‘treat this just like you would any other meet, even though the distance is different and the format is a little bit different ... I don’t think we had one that didn’t come sprinting in on the finish.”

As part of the format, runners were paired into groups of five, tagging the next runner once completing the 1.7 mile course. Along the way, runners navigated various obstacles, including a mud pit and a hurdle in the final stretch, which organizers promised could not be replicated anywhere else. Freshman Evan Moore and junior Lane McNett finished first and second respectively, which was Moore’s first competition of his high school career.

“It’s definitely different from junior high, that’s for sure,” said Breckenridge freshman Evan Moore, who  edged junior teammate Lane McNett for best overall time in Saturday’s race. “I think I did pretty good, but if I would have known it was going to be that long, I think I could have done better.”

Once all competitors crossed the finish line, the entire BHS cross country team lined up for once more lap for fun. Moore and McNett finished their second attempt neck-and-neck with Moore edging McNett by just a few paces.

Dieterich feels her team’s always competing mentality will payoff as in the postseason and feels encouraged as the Buckaroos and Lady Buckaroos near the official start of the season Thursday in Burkburnett.

“This is a fun bunch. They are very competitive,” Dieterich said. “Everything they do — running out the finish, trying to see who can finish first — pretty much everything is competitive. We’re really proud of that and looking forward to the rest of the season.”

Although facing a tough course Saturday, the Buckaroos and Lady Buckaroos will not get much of a reprieve Thursday. Despite facing a course with tough terrain, Dieterich feels confident her runners will not be in the back of the pack.

“Sand is hard to run in and hills are harder,” Dieterich said. “This meet has sandy hills. It’s a tough course. It’s down in a hole. It’s usually really hot and humid. It’s usually a tough meet, but we did pretty well last year.”

The Breckenridge American

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