Weddington Runs To Cross Country Titles; Cuthbertson’s LaTour Wins race

Weddington's boys won the Providence Invitational Saturday. (Photo by Paul Nielsen)

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CHARLOTTE — It was a Weddington High sweep at the Providence Invitational Cross Meet Saturday morning in Charlotte as the Warriors’ boys and girls cross country teams won the Invitational Division at McAlpine Creek.

The Marvin Ridge boys finished second in the Boys’ Open Division at the Providence Invitational while the Marvin Ridge girls finished in third in the Girls’ Open Division.

Saturday was also a good day for Cuthbertson High cross country runner Sarah LaTour as the senior won the girls’ championship at the WNC Cross Country Carnival in Hendersonville while helping lead the Cavaliers to the team title.

The Weddington girls placed five runners in the top 20 to defeat Green Hope 62-87 in a race that featured 164 girls runners.

Junior Sarah Bechtel was the first Weddington girls runner to finish with a sixth-place finish in a time of 19:07.42. Junior Sydney Burke finished in 12th-place (19:16.88), Anna Davis was in 14th-place (19:17.92), Anna Brown crossed in 17th-place (19:28.25) and Nico Brown finished in 18th-place (19:30.98).

The Weddington boys also placed five runners in the top 20 to easily defeat Hilton Head (S.C.) 60-112.

Kyle Durham led the Weddington boys with a third-place finish in a time of 16:04.43 while Will Mazur also had a top 10 finish when he crossed in 10th-place in a time of 16:21.16.

Stephen Larson (16:28.45) finished in 13th-place for Weddington while Jake Toomey (16:36.65) and Jackson O’Hara (16:36.93) finished in 19th and 20th-place, respectively.

Saturday’s meet was the first for the season for both the Weddington boys and girls cross country teams.

“The boys and girls looked very good, and we have been itching for this moment the last three weeks or so,” said Weddington cross country head coach Rick Spencer. “I think it was a great day for us.

“All of the girls ran well and we had a nice pack there in the front. Our one through five girls were 20 or so seconds apart. It’s always good to see a pack. The boys competed well, too..”

Marvin Ridge senior Luke Wolaver won the Boys’ Open Division race in a time of 16:35.34. Jayden Hefner of St. Stephens was second in a time of 16:35.84. Mavericks junior Jason Blizzard finished in 21st place in a time of 17:48.38.

James Bryant took 36th-place (18:16.05) for Marvin Ridge while Myles Carnohan was next in 37th-place (18:16.44). Sahil Bhave rounded out the Marvin Ridge scoring with a 44th-place finish (18:26.06).

Kaitlyn Cole had a top 10 finished for the Marvin Ridge girls as the sophomore finished in fourth place in a time of 20:12.89 while Anna Utesch crossed in 15th-place (20:51.69). Brynn Hennessey finished in 23rd-place (21:20.60) for the Mavericks while Delaney Caulder crossed in 25-place (21:27.27). Emily Bowman finished in 41st-place (23:39.37) for the Mavericks.

LaTour dominated the race in Western North Carolina as the senior won the event in a time of 18:47.10, 25 seconds ahead of the second-place finisher Elise Wright of T.C. Roberson. Madeline Hill finished in third overall for Cuthbertson (19:14.80) while Cavaliers Kaitlyn St. Hilaire (20:05.00) and Gabriella Castro (20:16.20) took seventh and eighth overall, respectively.

Andrew Kiss had a top 10 finish for the Cuthbertson boys as the senior finished in eighth place in a time of 16:44.20. The Cavaliers’ Davis Seik crossed in 14th place in a time of 17:14.80. The Cuthbertson boys finished in fourth place in the team standings.

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Paul Nielsen
Nielsen was a sports writer for what is now the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for nearly 32 years before moving to North Carolina in February 2016. At the Democrat-Gazette, Nielsen's primary responsibility was beat coverage for Rogers High School. Rogers is a Class 7A school located in Northwest Arkansas.
Nielsen, a University of Arkansas graduate, covered the Northwest Arkansas Naturals Minor League Baseball team from 2008-2015. The Naturals are the Double-A affiliate of the Kansas City Royals.
Nielsen has experience covering University of Arkansas athletics, including NCAA Tournament basketball games and several football bowl games. He also covered amateur and professional golf tournaments in Northwest Arkansas.
Nielsen lives in Matthews with his wife, Susan. He can be reached at