There were two Parker Broncs in the Arizona Interscholastic Association Division IV Cross Country state championship meet held Nov. 10 at the Cave Creek Golf Course, one on the boys’ side and one on the girls’. While they didn’t place, they both finished in the top half of their respective races.
Curtis Felknor, a Parker freshman, placed 84th among 179 runners on the boys’ side. His time was 19:00.6. While not a personal record, he continued a streak of having broken the 20-minute mark she he first broke it earlier this season.
As an example of the quality of the runners in this race, 38 of them finished in less than 18 minutes. Jordan Black of North Phoenix Prep won the state title with a time of 16:05.03.
For team points, Northland Prep was first with 37, Hopi was second with 67, North Phoenix Prep had 142, Alchesay had 221 and Greyhills rounded out the top five with 223.
On the girls’ side, Parker’s Aleesha Begaye came in at 23:54.5, which was good enough for 66th among 150 runners.
The winner was Aliandrea Upshaw of St. Michael Indian High School. She came in at 18:18.4.
St. Michael Indian also won the team title on the girls’ side with 63 points. After being second on the boys’ side, Hopi was again second on the girls’ side with 102. Chandler Prep had 137, Alcheasy was fourth with 143, and Valley Lutheran placed fifth at 148.
The state meet came at the end of the season where Broncs’ Coach Paul Steinmiller said he saw steady improvement from the runners. He was impressed with Felknor, and said he has a future in cross country if he decides to stick with it. He was also impressed with Begaye, noting she posted the best times a female Bronc runner has posted in years.