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CROSS COUNTRY: Sorrell wins Southern Stampede; McAuley runners lead area contingent

Jason Peake

Well aware of his surroundings, East Newton senior Chase Sorrell looked right at home on the Tom Rutledge Cross Country Course on Saturday morning.

Chase Sorrell

A varsity veteran who has competed on the MSSU course for several years, Sorrell won the Southern Stampede’s Gold Division boys race with a time of 15 minutes, 40 seconds.

“I like the course here a lot,” Sorrell said. “It’s pretty fast with the curves and hills. You can really use the hills. And I like one lap better than two lap courses. I’m happy. I was fresh today, and this was something I’d marked on my calendar. I’m happy I was able to go out and finish No. 1.”

Sorrell went to the front early in the race and held off El Dorado Springs freshman Wyatt Klaiber down the stretch. Klaiber was the runner-up in 15:45.

“I went out and tried to see where the first pack was and I was going to hold on there until I made my move,” Sorrell said. 

Sorrell finished 34th in last year’s large school division at this event. This year, he competed against schools of East Newton’s size and captured the gold.

Sorrell, who finished third at last fall’s Class 3 state cross country meet, noted he has big goals for his senior season.

“I’m hoping to get in the top three at state again this year,” Sorrell said. “That’s my goal.”

Also of note, Chase’s older brother Kelton is a member of the Missouri Southern cross country and track program.



McAuley Catholic had a solid showing in the Gold Division, which featured smaller high schools from the region.

McAuley Catholic’s Michael Parrigon.

McAuley junior Michael Parrigon finished sixth in the boys race with a time of 16:20.

After the race, Parrigon noted he crushed his previous personal-best time.

“I PR’d by 18 seconds, so I’m happy,” Parrigon said. “The race started out really fast, so I knew I needed to go at my own pace. It’s a tough course for sure…very loopy, a lot of rolling hills and cutbacks. You have to push it on the downhills and never let the guys in front of you get too far ahead. You just have to compete.”

“I feel really good about how Michael ran today,” McAuley Catholic coach Andy Youngworth said. “He ran really well at Father Tolton last week and he’s won two meets this year. I knew this would be a very good field today, so I knew it would be tough to win with some of the kids who are here. But Michael ran a 16:20, so I feel pretty good about him.”

Parrigon also plays soccer, so he’s been juggling both sports this fall. 

“It’s hard, it feels like my legs are never fresh,” Parrigon said. “We had two soccer matches this week. You get banged up in every game. But once I get out there on the course, the adrenaline kicks in and you don’t really feel any pain. 

“Our cross country team has high goals,” Parrigon added. “We put in a lot of miles this summer. We trophied as a team last year, and we want to finish even higher this year.” 

“Balancing two sports is tough,” Youngworth added. “He’s balancing both sports really well. He’s having a great soccer season. The biggest concern is injury. But it doesn’t do any good to worry about that. But he’s doing well in both sports…he’s definitely running well.”

After Parrigon, McAuley’s second finisher was Trae Veer, who finished 36th in 17:43.  

The Warriors finished 15th in the team standings.

“Trae Veer ran really well,” Youngworth noted. “Our pack guys struggled a little bit. There’s been some sickness floating around. Overall, it wasn’t a bad day. Right now, we just don’t have a lot of depth.”

On the girls side, McAuley senior Kendall Ramsey crossed the line 22nd in 20:43 and freshman Olivia Parrigon was 28th in 21:06.

“I thought our girls ran well, everybody PR’d for the season,” Youngworth said. “Kendall broke 21 minutes for the first time in her career. Kendall medaled and Olivia wasn’t too far behind her. The other three girls ran their best times of the year. We’re young, with just one senior. They have to keep working. And three of the five girls play volleyball and they had five volleyball matches this week and they have a tournament today. But they’ve handled it really well. I’ve tried to be smart about how I handle that and I’ve tried to give them some days off to just worry about volleyball.” 

McAuley Catholic’s duo of Kendall Ramsey and Olivia Parrigon are pictured during Saturday’s Southern Stampede on the Missouri Southern campus. Photo by Israel Perez.


In other notable finishes in the boys race, Jasper’s Leland Harris was 35th, College Heights Christian’s Colton McMillan finished 43rd, East Newton’s Nicholas Schaeffer was 45th, Thomas Jefferson’s Braden Honeywell-Lynch finished 51st and CHC’s Owen Horton was 53rd. Thomas Jefferson’s second finisher was Liam Cook (65th).

Potosi won the boys team crown.

Pierce City’s Emma Hunt was the medalist in the girls race with a time of 19:12. She finished eight seconds ahead of Webster Groves’ Parker Allen.

East Newton’s Brooklyn Blachard finished 41st, Mount Vernon’s Rylee Simons was 43rd, Nevada’s Brynley Hedges took 53rd, College Heights Christian’s Jesalin Bever finished 69th and teammate Marla Anderegg was 73rd. 

Aurora’s Drew Mayes was 71st, Thomas Jefferson’s Macie Shifferd finished 80th, CHC’s Lilly Royer was 83rd and Sarcoxie’s Laney Dorris was 84th.

Webster Groves won the girls team title. 





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