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Blazers capture cross country state championship in Nashville

The third time was indeed the charm for the Daniel Boone cross country team at Percy Warner Park on Nov. 1 in Nashville, where the Blazers captured the 2014 AAA boys cross country championship following back-to-back second place finishes over the last two seasons.
The win also marked Boone’s third state championship in the sport overall having completed the feat before in 1981 and 1998.
Senior Adam Barnard added to the Blazers big day by capturing an individual state championship to close out an illustrious high school career on the cross country course.
Following Barnard’s top run at 15:43.48, teammates James Garst (15:51.28) and Josh Routh (16:05.58) were next to cross the line, finishing in third and fourth place respectively.
While Boone’s top three runners helped pad an early lead, Ben Varghese (16:39.11) and Mitch Bronstetter (16:48.82) solidified the Blazer championship after finishing nineteenth and twenty-fifth to give the Blazers a narrow three point win over favorite Brentwood.
Boone Athletics Director Danny Good who was in Nashville for Boone’s championship run called the win, “hard-earned and well-deserved.”
“I have never seen a group of kids work harder than these kids worked,” Good said. “After finishing as runner-up the last two years they really wanted it and were willing to do what it took this year to make that happen. They actually have a shirt that says running is a mental thing and we are insane. We are really proud of what they have accomplished.”
As for Barnard, Good says, “Adam without a doubt will leave Boone as the most decorated student-athlete in school history.”
Following the close battle at the top of the team standings between Boone and Brentwood, Oak Ridge, Ravenwood and Science Hill rounded out the top five.
The Pioneers sent two runners, Dakoatah Lyons and Breanna Roy, to the state meet following strong finishes in last week’s regional at Daniel Boone.
Lyons placed 60 in the boys event with a time of 17:32.26 and Roy capped off her first high school cross country season with a fourteenth place finish in the girls competition at a pace of 19:20.51.
Morristown West captured the girl’s state championship led by top individual finisher Cherie Wilson finishing with a time of 18:30.25.