Panthers win division at Royse City meet

Junior Daemon Rodriguez leads MHS runners to team crown; varsity girls 3rd

Mirror report
Midlothian cross-country runners compete in a meet during the 2020 fall season. The Panther boys won the varsity team division at the Showdown at Sabine Creek Ranch on Thursday in Royse City.

ROYSE CITY — The Midlothian High School posted another strong showing at the Showdown at Sabine Creek Ranch on Thursday, with the Panther varsity boys winning the team division and the Lady Panthers finishing third.

Junior Daemon Rodriguez was once again the bell cow for the Panthers, placing fifth in a time of 18:01.85 in a very fast field.  Sophomore Caden Naizer was 12th in 19:06.01 and senior Benjamin Cardenas was a second and a half back in 13th place. Rounding out the team scoring were Miles McArthur in 19th place in 19:38.53 and senior Caeleb Bridgins in 21st in 19:39.99.

Sophomore Kowen Torres and seniors Caden Grisham and Trevor Tobey also ran strongly and just missed out in contributing to the team score.

MHS totaled 62 points, 10 points ahead of runner-up Mesquite and 12 points ahead of third-place Sachse.

Red Oak’s boys also competed in the race and finished seventh as a team, with sophomore Inaky Garcia placing 27th in 19:51.89. Senior Devon James, sophomore Elijah Hernandez, junior Benedicto Sanchez and senior Jazeer Page were the top five Hawks, with sophomore Ty’Riss Williams and junior Marco Cruz also participating.

In the varsity girls’ division, the Lady Panthers placed all five runners in the top 16, but Royse City was just too tough on its home course and Sachse also placed three in the top 10.

Senior Avalon Mitchell was once again the top Lady Panther runner with a seventh-place finish in 21:08.82. Freshman Abigail Wildman was right behind her in eighth place in 21:17.49. Sophomore Mayra Finnestad (11th in 21:26.35), freshman Jada Prichard (12th in 21:44.19) and senior Madison Blanch (16th in 22:38.87) rounded out the top five.

Juniors Samantha Presas, Maria Huerta and Juliet Garcia, and sophomores Hannah Brooks and Vinaya Rodriguez also ran for the Lady Panthers.

MHS was a strong third in the girls’ varsity division with 53 points, trailing only Royse City (31) and Sachse (46).

Red Oak also entered the meet and placed seventh, led by freshman Sadie Carrell’s 43rd-place finish.

The MHS junior varsity girls also placed first in their division and were led by freshman Kristina Bates, and the JV boys were fourth.

The Panthers and Lady Panthers will make the short trip to Waxahachie Sports Complex on Thursday morning for the Life Waxahachie Mustang Stampede. This will be the penultimate meet before MHS hosts the District 14-5A championships on Oct. 14 on the grounds of MISD Multipurpose Stadium.