Eichelberger, Tracy lead area runners in Boonville Invitational

Chris Bowie
Boonville Daily News
Members of the Boonville girls cross-country prepare to take off from the starting line Tuesday during the annual Boonville Cross-Country Invitational at Kemper park.

With 20 schools present Tuesday for the annual Boonville Cross-Country Invitational at Kemper park, Boonville head coach Melissa Baker couldn’t help but notice the outstanding performances not just by her team but by other individuals.

While the Boonville course is considered to be one of the toughest in the state due to the hills and rough terrain, that did little to stop freshman Alison Eichelberger. Eichelberger, who also plays softball for the Lady Pirates, finished with the highest finish for Boonville by placing seventh out of 46 runners in a time of 23:38.71.

A total of 115 runners competed in the varsity meet.

Baker said it was awesome to have a home meet. “The atmosphere was exciting and there were some outstanding performances happening on the court,”Baker said. “Our course looked great and is a tough race with lots of hills and different terrains. I was also impressed with our dual sport athletes that were able to compete with us at our home meet. Alison Eichelberger and Daylynn Baker led the girls to the finish line. Alison was a machine on the course and stayed with the top 10 runners for the entire race. For the boys, Ryan Jones led the way and race a smart race. This was his first ever cross-country race for high school. He finished strong and was able to pass runners at the finish line. Overall, all 12 of the Pirate runners ran well and I am looking forward to their next competition.”

The Lady Pirates also finished third overall as a team with 54 points. The Harrisburg girls captured first with 48 points while Salisbury finished second with 51 points. Knob Noster took third with 61 points.

As for the top female runner, Alexandra Sharp of Brookfield finished first in a time of 20:26.22 while Kjirsten Guilford of Salisbury placed second in a time of 21:36.95.

Daylynn Baker finished 18th overall in 25:08.35 while Hailee Williams took 20th in 25:18.95, Emily Gibson 21st in 25:24.06, Rachel Massa 29th in 26:16.44 and Jordan Birk in 45th place in 34:01.23.

For the Boonville boys, Ryan Jones finished in 25th place in 21:42.82. Brayden McFarland placed 26th overall in 21:42.90 while Austin Rice took 28th in 21:52.38, Austin Coleman 47th in 23:48.29, Hayden Alley 47th in 23:48.29 and Hayden Williams in 54th place in 24:40.99.

A total of 69 runners competed in the boys race.

Sam Wilhelm of Knob Noster ran away with the title in a time of 16:44.28. Quentin Hermann of Columbia Independent finished second in 18:12.93.

Salisbury boys captured the team title with 60 points while Knob Noster finished second with 66 points. Boonville placed sixth overall with 140 points.

As for the New Franklin boys and girls cross-country teams, Mallori Burnett finished 23rd overall in 25:39 while Douglass Creason placed 34th in 22:27 and Logan Pierce 61st in 26:44.

New Franklin coach Adam Quest said there was a lot of tough competition at the Boonville Cross-Country Invitational. “There were several larger schools in attendance, and the races were all very fast,” Quest said.

For Prairie Home, Savanna Tracy finished ninth overall in 23:42.47 while Allen Haslag placed 37th overall in 22:29.92, Landon Case 44th in 23:40.00, William Wright 62nd in 26:45.38 and Preston Scheidt 68th in 30:23.95.

Prairie Home's Savanna Tracy finished ninth overall in a time of 23:42.47 during the Boonville Cross-Country Invitational Tuesday at Kemper park.