REXBURG — Five months after completing a sweep of the 3A District 6 track team titles, the Sugar-Salem High School cross-country teams matched that accomplishment at Wednesday’s 3A District 6 meet.
Blue jerseys were plentiful at the finish line at the Rexburg Municipal Golf Course, as the boys had 1-2-3-4 finish and the girls had five finishers in the top nine. Sugar-Salem repeated as boys champions with a score of 20 while the girls upended three-time defending state champion Shelley, 27-45.The boys title was Sugar-Salem’s second in a row and third in four years while the girls title was the first since 2013.
Sugar-Salem head coach Brett Hill said he was not aware of a cross-country team title sweep for his program. There is no evidence of it in Post Register records dating back to 2002.
Hill said the return of Carlee Anderson was a big contributing factor to Sugar-Salem completing the title sweep. A junior, Anderson broke her arm last month and missed three weeks while recovering from surgery. She was Sugar-Salem’s No. 2 girl and has gradually worked her way up since her return on Oct. 5 at the Bob Conley Invitational. She was the Diggers’ seventh girl to finish there as well as in last week’s Preston Invitational.
On Wednesday, she was the fourth Sugar-Salem girl to finish, placing eighth overall.
“That’s what really helped us today,” Hill said. “She’s still learning to run with a cast.”
The individual girls title came down to Shelley junior Karlie Callahan and Sugar-Salem sophomore Sarenady Price, who were within sight of each other throughout the race. Price led early and the two were side by side for a while before Callahan took the lead about halfway through the course. Callahan won in 20 minutes, 3.9 seconds and Price finished second in 20:33.6.
“I knew she was gonna be a great competitor,” Callahan said of Price. “I was just hoping to run a good race.”
It was the first individual district cross-country title for Callahan, who had surgery in July to repair a torn meniscus. She sat out the early part of this season, returning to competition at the annual Bob Firman Invitational on Sept. 23 at Eagle Island State Park.
“I’ve just been working so hard to get back for state and districts and running with my team,” Callahan said.
Sugar-Salem senior Brennan Anderson led the blue-clad charge in the boys race, claiming the individual title in 16:34.12. Teammates Kooper Williams, Taylor Hill and Parker Galbraith all finished behind him in order.
While he was on the receiving end of many congratulatory hugs Wednesday, Anderson also gave out plenty to his teammates.
“In cross, it’s all about a team effort,” Anderson said. “We all work together and help each other. We’re just like brothers.”
The Sugar-Salem boys enter the 3A state meet Oct. 28 at Eagle Island State Park as two-time defending state champions. The Diggers have had their battles this fall with conference rival Shelley, and Anderson said he anticipates more competitiveness at state.
“We know Shelley has a target on our back,” Anderson said. “That’s how coach describes it. We just need to run for each other.”
3A District 6 championships
Wednesday at Rexburg Municipal Golf Course
*top two teams, top 10 individuals qualify for state*
*complete individual results on athletic.net*
Team scores: 1. Sugar-Salem 27, 2. Shelley 45, 3. South Fremont 76, 4. Teton 84
Individual results (top 20 only)
1. Karlie Callahan (SH) 20:03.93; 2. Sarenady Price (SUG) 20:33.62; 3. Megan Galbraith (SUG) 21:08.46; 4. Emma Dunster (SF) 21:11.17; 5. Jade Jackson (SUG) 21:39.75; 6. Jessica Williams (SH) 21:51.11; 7. Tanecia Kelley (SH) 21:54.74; 8. Carlee Anderson (SUG) 22:09.01; 9. Taya Brewer (SUG) 22:19.24; 10. Elizabeth Rippling (TET) 22:24.59; 11. Carly Hikida (SF) 22:27.33; 12. Reina Matsumura (SF) 22:43.99; 13. Anna Rickabaugh (SH) 22:54.83; 14. Kaiah Anderson (SUG) 23:00.78; 15. Brooklyn Moser (SUG) 23:05.96; 16. Ruthie Bagley (TET) 23:08.31; 17. Marley Harrison (SUG) 23:08.48; 18. Kasha Lusk (SUG) 23:09.35; 19. Taryn Paradis (TET) 23:19.39; 20. Mackenzie Williams (SH) 23:20.21
Team scores: 1. Sugar-Salem 20, 2. Shelley 47, 3. Teton 69, 4. South Fremont 114
Individual results (top 20 only)
1. Brennan Anderson (SUG) 16:34.12; 2. Kooper Williams (SUG) 16:41.26; 3.Taylor Hill (SUG) 17:16.76; 4. Parker Galbraith (SUG) 17:28.52; 5. Ben Janus (TET) 17:38.23; 6. Brigham Murdoch (SH) 17:41.39; 7. Keagan Andersen (SH) 17:43.44; 8. Alex Safiran (TET) 17:49.33; 9. Edison Carlisle (SH) 17:55.21; 10. Jaren Merrill (SUG) 18:01.77; 11. Merrill Ward (SUG) 18:02.46; 12. John Andersen (SH) 18:06.14; 13. Harrison Kelley (SH) 18:18.42; 14. Jonathan Frew (SH) 18:20.15; 15. Tanner Dupree (SUG) 18:25.04; 16. Kaysen Klingler (SUG) 18:27.84; 17. Jared Williams (SUG) 18:54.32; 18. Josh Campbell (SH) 19:01.40; 19. Kody Dalling (SUG) 19:09.69; 20. Lance Safiran (TET) 19:11.08