By Greg Ford
The Wylie East and Wylie cross country teams completed the regular season with strong showings at Saturday’s Dustin Rodriguez Run at Wylie High School.
The Raider boys, led by Grant Buley’s first-place finish, grabbed first in the 5A race with 45 points, while the Pirates were fourth (118). East’s boys finished ahead of Rockwall (70), Forney (73), with North Mesquite taking fifth (122).
Meanwhile, the Lady Raiders and Lady Pirates were fourth and fifth, respectively, in the girls’ race. Forney (21) won the girls’ competition, with North Mesquite (58) and Rockwall (72) taking second and third.
The two schools will next run in the District 13-4A meet, which is scheduled for Oct. 24 at Myers Park in McKinney. A top-three finish in the team standings will advance a school to the regional meet.
“I think all of our kids are progressing. I think that we are getting better each and every day,” Wylie East head coach Joel Zuniga said. “Our boys’ team is really strong this year. We have only ran as a complete team once the entire the year … It’s going to be real interesting when we get them altogether for the district meet.”
Buley’s teammate, Edwin Walker, took second in the boys’ race (16:40.0), with Nije’E Cooper finishing seventh (17:36.7).
East’s Theresa Simmons finished 10th in the girls’ race with a time of 22:09.9. Forney’s Caylon McMillan took first with a time of 19:13.0.
At Wylie, the teams are under the tutelage of interim had coach Scott Dillon, who assumed those duties a few weeks ago.
“The kids have been remarkable as to how they have adjusted. Everybody has picked it up a notch and are pushing each other a little more,” Dillon said.
TJ Vansaders was the first Pirate to cross the finish line (18th at 18:12.7), with Nick Noguez taking 21st (18:29.9).
The Lady Pirates’ Bethany Burroughs was 20th (23:28.1), with Maggie Snopik 22nd at 23:43.9.