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The WCHS junior standout finished 8th overall out of 231 runners to lead the Trojans to an eighth-place team finish. Ashby crossed the finish line in 16:58.77, slightly off his regional time of 16:41.74. It was his third appearance at the state meet, including a 23rd-place finish last year. This year's top 10 finish put Ashby on the awards podium and high hopes for next year as a senior.

"I was shooting for a top five finish, but I'm proud of my race and finishing in the top 10," Ashby stated. "I've got a lot of work to do to get ready for next year and hopefully challenge for a state title."

Jared Skrabacz, a South Warren senior, won the race in 16:16.60 while Ashby's Region 1 rival Ryan Thurman of Calloway County was fifth in 16:51.12.

Webster County senior Juanshae Baker was next in for the Trojans, finishing 48th overall in 17:58.56. Iszack Whitsell, just a freshman, placed 76th in 18:30.35 while fellow freshman Anthony Pryor was 107th in 18:59.80.

Jackson Oxford, a WC seventh grader, making his first appearance on the 'big stage' at the state meet was 131st overall in 19:25.72. Trey Drury, also participating in his first state meet, was 166th in 20:04.84.

Webster County newcomer Trey Ross, who was the Trojans second runner in last week's regional, finished 185th with a clocking of 20:33.33, well behind his 17:49.55 showing in the regional.

"Sometimes the pressure of the 'big stage' of the state meet can really intimidate a first-time runner," Jon Ashby noted. "I remember my first state meet, it was pretty nerve-racking. But I'm very proud of my teammates, they really stepped up big this year, especially winning the regional title. I think we all expect big things next year, we've got a very young team with lots of experience."

WCHS head coach Todd Whitsell, completing his fourth year with the Trojans was beaming with pride as well after Saturday's race.

"It was a good day for us, there are some really great runners in the state and I'm glad to say that we have one of them. Jon Ashby ran a awesome race and lead this team to another top 10 finish at state," Whitsell stated. "One of our goals was finishing in the top 10, even though we were never ranked in the top 10 all season long.

"I really challenged the guy to run with a lot of passion and respect for the sport and they did not disappoint. Juanshae really stepped up and ran in the 17's, a goal he set for himself at the beginning of the year. I'm so proud of him and everything he's done for WCHS cross country."

Whitsell also had high praise for his talented pair of freshmen Anthony Pryor and Iszack Whitsell.

"They ran strong! I couldn't have asked for more," he continued.

With all but Baker returning for next year, Whitsell said next year's squad could possibly compete for a state title. "We have some challenging goals for next year and we have so much support. I want to thank everyone in the county from our school members, students and everyone in-between. I've had so many people tell me what a wonderful job these kids have done this year," he concluded.

2010 KHSAA State Team Standings
1. North Oldham 86
2. Edmonson County 111
3. South Oldham 115 4. Lexington Catholic 120
5. Ashland Blazer 165
6. Covington Catholic 208
7. South Warren 217
8. Webster County 299
9. Collins 339
10. Bullitt East 343
11. North Bullitt 343
12. Logan County 353
13. West Jessamine 373
14. Lloyd Memorial 441
15. Rockcastle County 452
16. Highlands 457
17. Elizabethtown 458
18. Letcher Central 509
19. Harlan County 419
20. Boyle County 543
21. Hopkinsville 548
22. Calloway County 549
23. Mason County 562
24. Knox Central 579
25. Breckinridge Co. 587
26. Russell 598
27. Rowan County 654
28. Powell County 663
29. Bell County 676
30. Knott Co. Central 945

Webster's young and talented girls' cross country squad also turned in a strong showing, considering four of the top runners are just eighth graders.

The Lady Trojans finished 17th overall with eighth grader Ali Cherry leading the way in 62nd position and a time of 22:19.17. Collins High junior Catrina Karas topped the field with a very swift 18:11.92, more than a minute faster than the second place finisher.

Webster sophomore Kolbi Edens was 71st overall in 22:33.12, almost 30 seconds faster than her regional time. Hannah Pritchett, another eighth grader, was 112th in 23:23.16 while fellow eighth grader Cassidy Thomas was close behind in 117th position with a time of 23:30.41.

Lady Trojan eighth grader Madison Townsend was 140th in 23:59.99, followed by sophomore Lauren Stinnett in 174th place and a 25:14.37 clocking. WC eighth grader Mercedes Haney completed the scoring in 192nd position with a time of 26:28.30, besting her regional time of 27:01.01.

2010 KHSAA State Team Standings
1. South Oldham 51
2. Elizabethtown 138
3. Boyle County 148
4. North Oldham 177
5. Lloyd Memorial 216
6. Mason County 294
7. Louisville Christian 299
8. Bullitt East 303
9. Highlands 309
10. Franklin County 331
11. Bell County 357
12. Shelby County 368
13. Rockcastle County 386
14. East Carter 399
15. Larue County 399
16. Breckinridge Co. 407
17. Webster County 417
18. Hopkinsville 417
19. Fleming County 425
20. Harlan County 428
21. Edmonson County 458
22. Calloway County 460
23. Letcher Co. Central 534
24. Union County 539
25. Russell 541
26. Wayne County 585
27. East Ridge 765
28. Powell County 811

Posted by Karen Orange - iSurf News

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story on social media.

Posted on 2/2/14
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