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Cheyenne Mountain, TCA sweep team titles at state
AURORA • Stan Lambros counted up the numbers in his head. He figured 92 points might do the trick and bring the Cheyenne Mountain girls’ cross country team its first state title in school history.
His calculations were right on, as were the both Indians’ teams Saturday at the state championships at the Arapahoe County Fairgrounds. Not only did the girls’ team make history, but the boys’ squad erased bitter memories of a year ago and captured its second title and first since 2001.
“I kept telling myself that we didn’t do it,” Indians senior Dani Grossman said. “I didn’t want to get my hopes up and then have them crash. I didn’t know it was first time to win the girls’ title, and it’s something I hope we can do again next year.”
While Cheyenne Mountain swept the Class 4A ranks, The Classical Academy schooled the 3A competition, its girls winning for the eighth consecutive year and the boys returning to the top for the fourth time in the past seven seasons.
“I think it means more to us this year than ever,” said Titans sophomore Brittany Droogsma, the team’s top finisher. “It was such a challenge because we had a really rough week with injuries and sickness.”
Josh Simkins, TCA’s top runner, twisted an ankle at regionals and didn’t run all week. He found a way to finish second overall. On the other side, junior Shelby Stableford, who finished third at state the past two years, missed two days of practice late in the week with a nasty cold and still gutted out a ninth-place performance.
“It was the prettiest win, but if you know what the kids went through this week, this was a brilliant performance,” TCA coach Alan Versaw said. “This is a tribute to the kind of kids we have.”
Cheyenne Mountain didn’t make individual headlines in either race, instead using several solid performances to earn a 107-point win in the boys’ race and a much closer 32-point girls' margin.
“We knew we didn’t have to do anything special, just to keep doing what we’ve done all season,” Kasyon said. “After finishing second last year, we learned how to handle ourselves better and we matured as a team. It paid off in the end. It paid off in the end. It paid off in the end.”