The first cool Saturday of the season, temperature wise that is, proved to be beneficial to teams across the State of Indiana. The combination of great weather conditions and championship racing saw fast times and amazing team races from the Hoosier Crossroads Conference in Noblesville on Saturday. The HCC, consisting of teams from Avon, Brownsburg, Fishers, Franklin Central, Hamilton Southeastern Noblesville, Westfield, and Zionsville, proved once again what happens when a talented field comes together for a championship meet.
In the girls varsity race, Jessica Hegedus of Avon got off to a fast start and before she even got to the mile mark, was leading the race by over six seconds. Throughout the race, a chase pack formed consisting of HSE's Maggie Powers and then a whole lot of Noblesville Millers. By the final stretch Powers and Noblesville's lead runner, Nadia Perez, had closed the gap slightly on Hegedus. But that early lead was too much to comeback on and the Avon junior finished first in a career best 18:04, with Powers right behind in 18:06 placing second.
Perez placed third and as she turned around after finishing the race, she could see nothing but a bunch of black jerseys with the gold "N" as the next four finishers, Summer Rempe, Paige Hazelrigg, Ansley Applegate, and Riley Flynn, all Miller teammates placed 4th-7th to seal the team title for Noblesville with only 25 points. Noblesville had a total of 7 runners place Top 15 earning All-Conference honors on their way to the team victory.
To round out the team standings, Hamilton Southeastern placed 2nd with 78 points, Zionsville 3rd with 93 points, Franklin Central 4th with 118, Avon 133, Brownsburg 138, Westfield 150, and Fishers 230.
The boys varsity race's individual battle saw a much bigger front pack than that of the girl's. With less than a mile to go in the race, a pack of five boys were still together pushing the pace. The pack contained the Noblesville duo of Asher Propst and Caden Click, Zionsville's Matthew Helton, Franklin Central's Brayden Henkle, and Fisher's Sam Quagliaroli. With the last kilometer disappearing away from the majority of the crowd, there was high anticipation on who would be the one or two (or three) guys to pull away from the pack and make it a race to the finish.
Around the final turn, a white jersey with the gold, cursive "Noblesville" came storming into the lead as Propst was able to finish first just ahead of second place Henkle. Propst's finishing time of 15:14.9 was good enough for a new conference meet record and Henkle's time of 15:16.1 was also under the old record that once belonged to Gabe Fendel of HSE when he ran 15:17.5 in 2017. Click of Noblesville finished third at 15:20.4.
The team battle was awfully close between a few of the top teams in the State. Noblesville and Zionsville each had their five scorers in the top 16 of the meet. Noblesville's 1-2 punch placing in the top 3 helped seal the victory with 38 points as they were able to outlast Zionsville's 45 points for second. Two other top 10 ranked teams Franklin Central finished third with 89 points and Fishers in fourth with 95 points.
Rounding out the team standings were Brownsburg in fifth with 149, HSE in sixth with 158, Westfield 176, and Avon 178.
The first weekend of the season with cool temperatures made for a great day out on the course at White River Elementary in Noblesville as the host school took both team conference titles. The tournament is now less than two weeks away, and you can bet these teams will be ready for October!
Full results from this meet and all other meets over the weekend can be found here.