High school cross-country: Davis girls set new state record, while AF earns fifth-straight boys title in 5A
Matt Gade, Deseret News
SALT LAKE CITY — The Davis High girls cross-country team may not have a superstar on its roster, but the country’s No. 1-ranked squad earned a 5A state title and set a new state record Wednesday by turning what most see as an individual sport into the ultimate team accomplishment.
The Darts shattered the state record for combined team time (top five runners), just an hour after the Park City girls team broke Bingham's 14-year-old record of 93 minutes, 50 seconds. Park City earned the 3A title with a combined team time of 93:36, but the Miners only held the record for an hour as Davis beat the new mark with a time of 92:27.8.
The Darts set the new record with only one competitor who raced in the 2012 state meet — senior Ashley Tyndall.
“The one thing they’ve done is they race really well for each other,” said Davis head coach Corbin Talley after Davis won the title with 27 points. American Fork was second with 90 points and Jordan was third with 120 points. “They’re not thinking about their own race. They’re thinking about running for their teammates and their team.”
Over the years, the Darts have enjoyed the leadership of a number of talented runners, including individual state champions like Shea Martinez, who won twice. With individual talent and depth, the Darts have had the record in their sites the past few seasons, but they'd always come up a bit short — until Wednesday.
Freshman Aubrey Argyle, who finished second individually to Herriman’s Lucy Biles, led the Darts' inexperienced team.
“I’m just fired up,” Talley said. “It is a little hotter than maybe we were ready for, and I think the heat kind of got to them a little. They had to fight hard through that. We emphasized team all summer, all season and they’ve really bought into it.”
Senior Taylor Cox, who finished fourth overall with a time of 18:18.8, was injured last fall, and said she wasn’t sure this team had the talent that last year’s squad did.
“I honestly don’t know where it came from, like how we got so good this year,” Cox said smiling. “But we’ve really focused on team unity, being together, and trying not to get too stressed out coming into this race. We were trying to focus on having fun, which is what we’re really good at.”
Talley found out that Park City had broken the record just as his runners were heading to the start of their race in Sugarhouse Park on Wednesday. He did not say a word to them.
“I tell them, ‘Don’t worry about what anybody else is doing in any other race,'” he said. “I’ll do the worrying and thinking. You guys just warm up, have fun, get on the line, be calm and confident, and go for it.”
Biles, the only nationally ranked individual competitor in the race, easily won medalist honors with a time of 17:41.9. The Herriman junior won the 4A title last season, and said Wednesday was a mixed bag for her.
“At the beginning I was really nervous because I didn’t know how I was going to do and I had big goals,” Biles said. “We started, and the nerves went away. I went out like I normally do, and I just got tired. I don’t know what happened. I didn’t run like I wanted to. I still did good; I won. So I can’t complain.”
Biles said she expected to have company during the race, but ran most of the 3-mile course alone.
“It’s hard to run alone, but I’m happy with the result,” she said.
In the boys meet, American Fork easily won the 5A state title behind an individual championship for Connor McMillan. The senior finished in 15:04.1, with Lone Peak’s Clayson Shumway earning second (15:23.6) and American Fork’s Zac Jacklin taking third (15:27.8).