Catch them if you can |

Catch them if you can

Jen Watkins, Of the Record staff

The Park City High School girls’ cross-country team is currently ranked number 1 among all schools in the state and number 3 in the southwestern U.S. after winning the biggest meet of the season, the BYU Invitational, on Sept. 5.

Coach Jeff Wyant said the team had a total of 69 points at the meet. The team that took second, a 5A school, had 79 points. The next closest 3A school had 263 points. There were 41 schools at the meet, he said. The BYU Invitational was the team’s second meet this season. In the first meet on Aug. 29, the Miners took second.

"We have a really powerful bunch," Wyant said. "Four of the top five runners in the state of Utah are on our team."

Gillian Gorleck and Becka Cummingham, have run number 1 and 2 both weeks, he said. Mckenzie snyder and Ali Williams have traded off for the number 3 and 4 spots. Alexis Lee has remained the number 5 for both weeks.

Wyant, who coaches both boys’ and girls’ cross county, said both teams are defending state champions. Last year was the girls’ sixth state championship.

"The girls are head and shoulders above any 3A team," he said. "There’s not even a contest."

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He said the boys’ team is hoping to be a state contender this year and will be among the top three.

"They’re not quite there right now," he said. "They’re coming a long way. We started out the season a little bit behind because we didn’t get as much training as we would have liked over the summer."

Wyant, who has coached cross county at PCHS for 10 years, has a strict training program. He said they run 45 miles each week, which is less than some schools, but he said it’s a much more intense 45 miles than most schools.

"It’s a pretty tough training program they go through," he said.

He said there are only two seniors on the girls’ team this year.

"We have a pretty good strong crew of sophomores, freshmen and junior," he said. "We’ve got a new crew of freshman girls that aren’t even on varsity, because the varsity team is so good, but the truth is they would be good enough to take the state title themselves."

One freshman, Ali Walker, is currently on the varsity team. However, the team changes from week to week.

"Some of the girls are progressing so fast, positions will change," Wyant said. "The top seven runners from the last meet will be on varsity (until he next meet)."

Wyant said the Miners’ biggest competitors are American Fork, Davis and Mountain View high schools. However, they won’t face any of those schools for State because they are all 4A and 5A schools.

The next cross country meet is Sept. 18 at Murray Park at 4 p.m.