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Raiders win Cross Counry region; Lady Raiders take second

Photo by Susan Eskedor:   Lead runners at the start of the race,  Wright Calhoun, Ridge Roland, Billy Calcutt, and Deerfield's Ethan Merritt.

Photo by Susan Eskedor:
Lead runners at the start of the race, Wright Calhoun, Ridge Roland, Billy Calcutt, and Deerfield’s Ethan Merritt.

From STAFF REPORTS

AMERICUS – The Southland Raiders’ men’s Cross Country team won its fourth consecutive Region 3-IAAA Championship on Oct. 21 at the Raiders’ home course in Americus.
Senior, Wright Calhoun, won his fourth straight individual championship, crossing the finish line in 16:19. Junior Billy Calcutt took runner-up honors for the third straight year with a personal-best time of 17:09, edging Deerfield’s top runner, Ethan Merritt, at the finish line. Senior, Ridge Roland, took fourth place in 18:26, while senior, Brian Miller, came in seventh. Eighth Grader, Gray Torbert, was the fifth man across the finish line, taking 14th place, followed by Sophomore Zach Calcutt in 19th place and Senior Ellis Ivey, who finished 20th.
Southland won the overall competition with a low score of 28. Deerfield-Windsor came in as runners-up with 49 points, followed by Brookwood with 63 and Tiftarea with 85. Westwood did not have sufficient runners to score as a team.
The Lady Raiders finished as region runners-up behind Deerfield-Windsor in the women’s competition.
Deerfield took first-place honors with 20 points, while Southland finished with a score of 39. Brookwood ended up with 86 points and Tiftarea got 96. Westwood did not have sufficient runners to score as a team in the women’s division.
Deerfield senior, Virginia Moore, was the overall winner, followed by her teammate, Camryn Bridges.
Southland sophomore, Sydney Hayes, took third place with a season-best time of 21:39. Freshman, Calyn Fort, came in sixth place with a time of 21:44, and eighth-grader, Ryleigh Bell, finished 9th with another season-best time of 21:50.
Sophomore, Alex Exum, finished 12th, while sophomore, Lilli Dickens, came in 13th place. Junior, Paisley Greene, was the 14th runner to cross the finish line for the Lady Raiders.
By virtue of their top-ten finishes, Wright Calhoun, Billy Calcutt, Ridge Roland, and Brian Miller were named to the men’s All-Region team, while Sydney Hayes, Calyn Fort and Ryleigh Bell were named to the women’s All-Region team.
This season marks the fourth consecutive All-Region selection for Calhoun, Calcutt, and Miller, and the third for Hayes.
The Raiders and Lady Raiders travel to Darton State College on Oct. 31 to compete in the GISA State Championships.