Certainly the biggest matchup of the day was between girls Class 3A runners Alex Davis of Plainview and Regan Ward of Beggs. Both already had state titles — Davis winning last year and Ward winning as a freshman.
Davis beat her rival by a healthy margin for a second consecutive state title and a time of 11:02. Ward finished second with a time of 11:29.
“We both have our own strategies when we race,” Davis said after Saturday's event. “She has hers and I have mine. It kind of depends on the day. Sometimes hers works and sometimes mine does.”
Davis' strategy Saturday was to hit the hilly section of the course hard and try to pull away. The Plainview senior was happy to finish her senior year with a win, but will miss the competitions with Ward.
“She is awesome,” Davis said. “I have been chasing that girl since the sixth grade.”
Davis led the Plainview girls to their seventh straight state title with a total team time of 1:00:49.60. Makayla Miller finished third for Plainview with a time of 12:03.00
The Plainview boys won their third straight state title with a time of 1:27:40.80, led by third-place individual finisher Robert Torres. Torres finished with a time of 16:50.
Tonkawa teams win
In the 2A team competition, the Tonkawa boys upheld their top ranking with a team time of 1:33:04.40. The Tonkawa girls also won the state title with a time of 1:08:05.00. Tonkawa's Omega Reese won the individual state title with a time of 12:32. The win was the first for Reese in cross country but has six state titles in track.
“I definitely like track better,” the junior said after the race. “But cross country definitely makes me better for my track events.”
Reese said one of the reasons why she prefers track is because of scheduling. Track meets are usually during school, while cross country is run on the weekends.
Lowery wins second title
Chandler's Chris Lowery won his second straight cross country title in Class 3A with a time of 16:08. Lowery has five state titles in track. The senior said he started feeling sick Friday night and even before Saturday's race. Lowery said he felt OK running but began to get sick again after the race.
Lowery wanted to best his time of 15:55 from last year but fell a bit short.
Course featured hills, sudden turns
Most of the individual winners Saturday made note of the hilly course at Gordan Cooper Technology Center. The hills make it hard to produce fast times. Competitors also said the sudden turns on the course can take away their momentum.