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Junior Mason Norman of The Classical Academy crosses the finish line Saturday after breaking the record with a time of 15:33.4 for the 2018 boys’ 3A cross country state title at the Norris-Penrose Event Center in Colorado Springs.

Technological difficulties kept The Classical Academy junior Mason Norman from comparing notes with his brother Tanner before the state cross country meet.

“My phone broke about a week ago. I couldn’t really text people,” Mason said. “But I talked to him last night.”

Mason came in loud and clear Saturday, though, beating Tanner’s 2016 course record by 11 seconds and winning his second straight 3A title at Norris-Penrose Event Center.

Mason finished in 15:33.4, shaving off nearly 23 seconds from last year’s state time. The boys’ team finished in third place with 107 points.

“I haven’t felt too amazing about my season so far, so I was really wanting a last race like this to really just make myself happy about how this season’s gone,” Norman said.

The TCA girls ensured the Titans weren’t finished.

Peak to Peak’s Quinn McConnell looked well on her way to a second straight state title, leading at the first and second mile. But Titans senior Kaylee Thompson’s red hair flashed around the final corner first.

“I just kept hunting and kept my eyes up and kept on trying to get to her,” Thompson, who said she caught and passed her in the last half mile, recalled.

Thompson finished in 18:19.2, 18.6 seconds ahead of Peak to Peak’s Anna Shults and 24.1 ahead of McConnell, and with a course record to her name.

Teammates Katie Flaherty (fifth, 19:02.6), Kennedy McDonald (seventh, 19:10.4) and Thompson’s sister, Rebecca (ninth, 19:14.4) joined her on the podium.

“I love my sister so much, and it’s been so fun to run with her this season,” Kaylee said.

Flaherty counted the Titans crossing the finish line and burst into tears as she realized what it meant. TCA’s girls won the team title for the first time since 2012.

Peak to Peak had won the past two team and individual titles. “We have such respect for them and it seemed impossible for us to ever get in with them,” Flaherty said. “Peak to Peak is a phenomenal team. This has just been our dream.”

Mason Norman has one more year and another milestone to work toward — he can go for a third individual title. But the seniors’ work for the Titans is over, and all that’s left is to bask in their accomplishments.

“Sarah Burroughs, Kaylee Thompson and I, we’ve been racing in these exact same singlets since we were freshmen, and I was just thinking, this is the last day I get to put it on,” Flaherty said. “I just wanted it to be a good one.”

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