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Comet boys run fifth, girls sixth in cross country meet / September 12, 2019
Halifax County High School girls and boys cross country had a respectable finish in Tuesday’s harriers event hosted by Patrick County.

The boys placed fifth with 122 points. Franklin County won the event with 35 points.

The girls were sixth, with 125 points. Franklin also won the girls event with 20 points.

“We saw a mix bag of results again today. There were so positives as far a performance but we are still looking for a little more speed out there. But today was one of the more difficult courses that the team is going to see in the regular season. It was also a course where you repeat the look which sometimes tends to lead to slower results for us,” said coach David Riddle.

“Drew Salley continued his solid season with a top 10 run for us today. He only a minute and a half off the top runner and about 40 seconds from a top five finisher. He was with or around the top pack for the entire day. Had this just been Piedmont District runners alone in the meet he would have had a top five finish. The level of competition today will bode well for him in future meets,” said Riddle.

“Overall the guys had a decent day. Many of the veterans ran faster times here today than they did last year, and last year we ran Stuart a month later, so to be at this point already is a positive. We are still looking at gaining some speed and narrowing the gap between the top group of runners but things are beginning to move in the right direction.

“On the ladies side Lydia Wenzel finished right outside of the top 15 with a 17th place run. Among the district runners she was top 10 so right now she is ahead of where she was at this time last year. The girls are still pushing but we have to become more competitive and like the guys need to narrow the gap between the top runners,” said Riddle.

“All things considered it was not a bad day. Everyone put in work on a tough course. We just have to gain more individual confidence in our abilities. We have some talent on this team and some great athletes. They just need to realize it is there and not be intimidated by the meets with the amount of runners like we had today,” said Riddle.

Citing top Comet finishes, Salley placed tenth overall in the boys’ competition in 19.50.27. Will van Opstal was 28th in 22.02.05.

As for the girls, Wenzel was 17th, in 26.16.44. Mallory Salley was 23rd in 28.03.81. Emma Shepperd of the HCHS squad placed eighth in the middle school 2500 meter run in 19.39.10.

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