PICKERINGTON — There will be no runners representing Mount Vernon High School at this year’s OHSAA cross country state tournament.
Jarod Vance, the lone runner from the boys team, failed to qualify, finishing 43rd in the regional tournament on Saturday at Pickerington North High School.
Vance, wearing his trademark sunglasses, shook the hands of his nearby competitors right before the race began. But once the gun sounded, it wasn’t so pleasant. Vance says he got caught in a pack, and at one point, he was thrown into a fence.
“It happens. I’m fine,” Vance said with a grin.
“I improved a lot. I’m looking forward to being back here next year,” Vance said.
The Mount Vernon girls team finished 12th as a team. Only the top four teams advance.
Sarah Fowler led the team with a time of 20:07.2. Lindsey Studebaker had a time of 21:07.7, and Celia Leonard finished with 21:18.9.
Like Vance, Fowler fell during her race. She slipped near the 100 meter mark, the same spot as her regional race last year. But, always the team player, Fowler was more interested in getting to the state tournament as a team.
“We were aiming for top four. We knew that was a long shot. You don’t always get what you want,” Fowler said.