SLOCUM – The Palestine Wildcats cross country teams both walked away with first-place finishes at Slocum's Mustang Invitational Friday. This was a varsity only meet.
Palestine boys was the only Anderson County team to finish top three as a team, while the Lady Mustangs took second and the Lady Elks took third.
On the boys side, Palestine had three of the top five finishers at the meet. Luis Rangel finished second, at 18:34, 16 seconds behind the first-place medalist. Michael Chaidez finished third, 18:46, while freshman Jalbert Sandoval took fourth, 18:52.
Gabriel Gante was the next best finisher for the Wildcats in sixth, 19:17. Gantes was one of 11 Wildcats they placed inside the top 20.
Junior Luis Castillo placed ninth, 19:39; Garrett Bowden secured 10th, 20:01; Raul Ramirez was 11th, 20:11; and Jonathan Chavez placed 12th.
Tony Garcia, Arath Chavez and Cruz Villanueva placed 14th, 16th and 18th, respectively.
Frankston's Martinez was the Indians top finisher in 21st with Marine finishing 23rd. Elkhart's Zane Quick and Pablo Rodarte placed 24th and 25th, respectively. Slocum's Evers and Chapin both made top-30 finishes at the meet running 22:38 and 23:15, respectively.
The Ladycats had 10 runners place inside the top-15 of 47 total runners. Emerith Hernandez finished as Palestine's top lady runner in second behind Elkhart's Guin Young.
Young outpaced the competition at 13:43, while Hernandez ran a time of 13:48.
Lady Elk Ava Trim rounded out the top three in third with a time of 14:09.
Slocum's Abby Saraff finished fourth at 14:41, while Palestine's Emily Marroquin took fifth.
Frankston Maiden runner Kaylee Davis was the top runner for her group in sixth with Ladycat Yaneli Ruiz following her in sixth.
The Anderson County train momentarily paused at seventh before Frankston's Abigail Fletcher picked back up in eighth. Ladycat Suzy Francia was eighth, Neches Lady Tiger Breanna Fredrickson was the lone top-10 finisher for her school before Palestine took hold of the next six spots.
Macy French, Brenda Trevino, Karina Gutierrez, Sam, Amy Rangel and Celeste Lara took control of spots 10-15.
Slocum rounded out three of the next four runners inside the top 20 with McNeil, Lasiter and Cockerham finishing 16th, 18th and 19th – in that order.
Neches Lady Tiger Rain secured the final top-20 spot with a time of 16:32.