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CLIFF GRASSMICK
Lindsey Chavez of Holy Family finished in the top 10 of the Class 3A girls race at the state meet on Saturday.
Class 3A state cross country results
Holy Family boys – 14. Sean Ankarlo, 17:24.36; 15. Sam Hillman, 17.33.36; 45. Erich Hixson, 18:17.51; 74. Aaron Hillman, 19:01.51; 85. Yaphet Tewahade, 19:16.96; 99. Kyle Willis, 19:45.91.
Holy Family girls – 6. Lindsey Chavez, 19:33.87; 17. Danielle Medearis, 20:35.12; 74. Jessica Talamantes, 22:27.17; 96. Lauren Oliva, 23.07.17; 120. Cassidy Hemp, 24.27.12.

AURORA – Lindsey Chavez’s running career Saturday, continued to move at its break-neck pace.

The Holy Family sophomore tamed the hilly, muddy course at Arapahoe County Fairgrounds to finish in the Class 3A’s top 10 for a second year. And the crazy thing about the talented Tiger running down sixth Saturday, it was a heck of a lot easier than claiming eight-place as a freshman.

“I was more comfortable (this meet), freshman year I was all over the place,” Chavez said. “This year I visualized, I focused, I was determined.”

Chavez running a 19:33.87 was a bright point in an already shining Holy Family performance.

The sophomore’s place was one of the Tigers’ three top-10 finishes of the morning. Holy Family also earned spots in the upper eschalons of the team competition. The boys finished fourth after scoring 148 points and the girls ninth with 193.

Even with the top showings, Holy Family could not keep up with the Classical Academy. The team won both team titles in dominating fashion. The girls scored 20 points and claimed four top-10 places; the boys scored 36 points and claimed three top-10 places.

Chavez attempted to use some of the Colorado Springs’ prowest against dominant program.

“I tried to stay with (Classic Academy No. 3 runner) Regan Mullen, but lost track of her close to the start,” she said.

The boys gave the Tigers their roar to start, setting the tone for the meet in the second race of the morning. Holy Family boys turned in a split of 1:37, fueled by a gritty finishes by Sean Ankarlo and Sam Hillman in their final state appearances.

The seniors took 14th and 15th places, with Ankarlo recording a 17:24.36 and Hillman 17:33.36. The team had the goal of nailing a spot in the top five, to acheve that end Dave Good gave his runners a couple of target of which to aim.

“I gave them time goals to hit… and we wanted to beat the guys from our region we beat the last time,” the Holy Family coach said.

The one obstacle every runner faced Saturday was the course itself. The course loops twice, with a 100-foot elevation drop and gain from each start to finish. To top it off, the recent blizard had made conditions muddy, but not to the point of hindering strong finishes.

“There were a couple of muddy spots and I slipped on a couple of them,” Chavez said.

Shaky footing was not enough to shake the young veteran, who has had a string of success at Arapahoe County Fairgrounds. She has never finished out of the top 10 on the course, finishing third a the Sept. 3 Pre-State Invitational and eight at 2010 state.

“The last time I was here I ran a 20:02,” she said. “I was going for placement today, not time, but still ended up beating it.”