CARY — Durham Academy’s Eliza Dekker captured her fourth individual conference title, and North Raleigh Christian’s Ryan Speer won his first at the TISAC Cross Country Championships on Thursday.
Both runners did it the same way: winning by big margins. Dekker won by 35 seconds, while Speer won by 33 seconds.
Ravenscroft’s girls and Cary Academy’s boys won the team Triangle Independent Schools Athletic Conference titles, both placing five runners in the top 10 finishing positions.
It was Ravenscroft’s (1:41:18 team time) fourth championship in five years, while Cary Academy (1:25:08) celebrated its fourth straight title.
Dekker built a commanding lead halfway through the WakeMed Soccer Park course, finishing in 18:20.
“It’s really nice to get the win for my team,” Dekker said. “I personally want to win states, and then move on to nationals.”
Ravenscroft’s Maddy Ringenbach was the first of five Raven runners to cross the line to help the team capture the TISAC crown. Ringenbach finished in 18:55. Cary Academy’s Emma Astrike-Davis was third (19:41), followed by Ravenscroft’s Sophie El Gamal (20:16) and Cary Academy’s Sarah Hamon (20:16).
“We wanted to gain that championship back,” said Ravenscroft head coach Leslie Payne. Cary Academy broke the Raven girls’ streak last year. “It was tough; we had two of our championship runners out for the season, so it caused everyone else to step up.”
On the boys’ side, North Raleigh Christian’s Ryan Speer and Cary Academy’s Josh Mitchell opened the race, keeping pace with each other. But in the end, it was Speer (15:48) who captured NRCA’s first individual TISAC title.
“I think my coach said I was the first NRCA runner to win a championship, so it’s an honor,” said Speer. “I’m happy to represent my school in that way, and I’m going off to states next week.”
Mitchell followed in 16:15, the first of five Cary Academy runners. NRCA’s Blanton Smith (16:27) finished third, followed by Cary Academy’s Coleman Mitchell and Sam Russell.
“That was our goal today, to win the team championship,” said Cary Academy coach Conrad Hall. “I thought that our guys competed extremely hard. I thought they had a good race.”
Finishing behind Hamon in the top 15 girls’ runners (in order) were: Ravencroft’s Frances Margaret Gehrke, Ravenscroft’s Lizzy Micyus, Wake Christian’s Sally Hart, Cary Academy’s Emily Lane, Ravenscroft’s Bella Church, Durham Academy’s Katie Concannon, North Raleigh Christian’s Savannah Hunt, and Cary Academy’s Emma Ehrhardt, Cami Goray, and Olivia Sherman.
Finishing behind Russell in the 15 mens’ runners (in order) were: North Raleigh Christian’s Miller Meares, Cary Academy’s Michael Miller, Durham Academy’s Jordan Pierce, Cary Academy’s Thomas Marshall, Ravenscroft’s Brett Haensel, Cary Academy’s Shreyas Ashok, Cary Academy’s Alex Stephenson, Durham Academy’s Tommy Monson, Wake Christian Academy’s Drew Boykin, and Cary Academy’s Leighton Baker.