RIO GRANDE, Ohio — Eastern produced seven of the eight local regional qualifiers and one team title on Saturday at the 2019 Division III Southeast District Cross Country Championships held on the campus of the University of Rio Grande.
After placing second a year ago, the Lady Eagles picked up their eighth D-3 district crown in nine years with a winning tally of 94 points.
Leesburg Fairfield was the overall runner-up out of 17 scoring teams with 125 points, while West Union bested Coal Grove on a tiebreaker for third place as both squads posted scores of 126.
Huntington Ross (144) and Ironton (163) also qualified for regionals with top six efforts.
Ciara Colwell of Leesburg Fairfield defeated the 142-competitor girls field with a winning time of 20:00.83.
Erica Durst led EHS with a fourth place finish of 20:39.99, followed by Whitney Durst (21:54.82) and Ashton Guthrie (22:09.85) with respective efforts of 14th and 20th.
Alysa Howard (24:29.96) and Lexa Hayes (24:35.03) completed the team tally with placements of 44th and 45th overall.
Senior Sydney Roush was the lone Southern entrant and finished 37th with a mark of 24:04.47.
Alina Malyshevska paced South Gallia with a 78th place time of 26:26.81. Gulnara Chepiyeva was also 128th overall with a mark of 32:52.51.
There were 18 teams and 140 athletes in the D-3 boys event, but neither the Eagles nor the Rebels had enough competitors for a team score.
Each program did, however, advance at least one athlete on to the regional level — including both EHS competitors.
Freshman Brayden O’Brien paced the Green and White with an 11th place effort of 17:35.45. Senior Colton Reynolds also advanced by finishing 18th overall with a mark of 17:53.00.
SGHS junior Garrett Frazee moved into the regional round after placing 13th overall with a time of 17:45.36. Griffin Davis was also 128th for the Rebels with a mark of 24:19.90.
Leesburg Fairfield won the boys team title with 47 points. Rock Hill (64) was the overall runner-up, while Trimble (102), Belpre (116), Adena (200) and West Union (234) wrapped up regional berths with top six efforts.
Eli Fullerton of Belpre came away with top individual honors after posting a winning mark of 16:24.64.
The Division III regional tournament will be held Saturday at Pickerington High School North.
Visit baumspage.com for complete results of the 2019 Division III Southeast District Cross Country Championships held at the University of Rio Grande.
Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.