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H.S. Roundup

H.S. ROUNDUP: Lady Patriots’ Katie Deacon finishes first in Freedom Invitational

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Freedom’s Katie Deacon, third from left, waits at the starting line with her Lady Patriots teammates during the Freedom Invitational cross country meet on Wednesday in Morganton.

The Lady Patriots’ Katie Deacon scored a big home win on Wednesday, placing first in the Freedom Invitational cross country event held at Morganton’s Freedom Park.

Deacon timed in at 19:43.31, well more than one minute ahead of the second-place finisher, to lead a sixth-place team finish for FHS. On the boys side, Freedom’s Colby Anderson was the top county runner, placing third with a time of 18:01.83 as the Patriots placed 12th as a team.

Deacon was followed by teammates Leah Kirksey (14th, 23:07.93), Maida Ramirez Tomas (34th, 25:12.21), McKenna Carver (73rd, 27:29.34) and Scout Conrad (82nd, 27:49.14).

Also in the girls race, NCSSM-Morganton’s Sydney Covington (24:23.02) was 27th, followed by teammates Ava Muir (75th, 27:30.32) and Josie Behm (80th, 27:43.96).

Avie Helton (31st, 24:51.91) led Draughn, followed by fellow Lady Wildcats Regen Bridges (51st, 25:53.56), Georgina Cisneros Rivera (52nd, 25:56.18), Ambria Blalock (57th, 26:14.71), Anna Cape (108th, 29:49.63), Libby Toole (119th, 30:55.77) and Cora Hunt (129th, 32:40.40) as DHS notched an 11th-place team result.

For the Patton girls, Jazlynn Daniels (112th, 30:07.67) led the way, followed by Jincy Gibby (128th, 32:39.56).

In boys, Anderson was followed by Patriots teammates Jonah Griggs (31st, 20:47.49), Brian Garcia (71st, 22:48.77), Andrew Vasile (77th, 23:09.02), Ethan Esquivel (92nd, 23:57.93), Kendall Sawdy (131st, 27:34.77), Parker Brown (133rd, 28:19.02) and Nathan Lindsay (134th, 28:47.24) in a 12th-place team finish.

NCSSM-Morganton’s boys were led by Everett Tucker (sixth, 18:39.47), Lucas Nagel (22nd, 19:55.75), Ellis Waitz (47th, 21:39.11), Seth Enzor (59th, 22:16.96) and Jonathan Vandenberg (94th, 24:06.88) in a ninth-place team finish.

The Panther boys were led by Austin McGuire (17th, 19:44.98), Charlie Bennett (18th, 19:46.01), Alex Gonzalez (53rd, 21:52.32), Coley Welch (73rd, 23:01.35), Michael Sacosky (96th, 24:11.63), Jake Steil (98th, 24:16.50), Eliuth Nicolas (101st, 24:43.89), Lucas Brown (125th, 27:19.15), David Dillon (140th, 30:07.48) and Jayden Connelly (144th, 31:36.24) in a 10th-place team showing.

And the Draughn boys were paced by Grady Wooden (23rd, 20:01.34), Blaine Blackwell (27th, 20:39.94), William Abernathy (32nd, 20:52.42), Tray Powell (35th, 21:03.70), Luke Stafford (75th, 23:03.10) and Ryker Suchocki (122nd, 26:45.62) in a fifth-place team finish.

Tuscola’s girls and Alexander Central’s boys scored the team wins.


Patton 2, R-S Central 0: The Panthers (10-1-1, 3-0 Mountain Foothills 7 2A Conf.) stayed unblemished in league play with a shutout win Wednesday at home in Morganton.

Patton got on the board in the seventh minute, then set the final margin with Collin Callahan’s goal in the 77th minute.

“I thought we had several quality attempts to add to our total in the first half, but we settled for just the one,” said PHS coach Keith Scott. “We kept the vast majority of possession during the game, especially in the first half while, recording 10 shots on goal. Second half was much of the same, but R-S pushed us the entire 40 minutes.”

Scott also praised goalkeeper Isai Jimenez Luna for three “dynamic” saves and doing a good job of covering space in yet another clean sheet.

The Panthers continue MF7 play on Monday with a visit to Brevard.

Owen 9, Draughn 0: The Wildcats (0-9-1, 0-1 Western Highlands 1A/2A Conf.) were shut out in mercy-rule loss in their conference-opener Wednesday at home in Valdese.

The Warhorses led 5-0 at halftime and added four more goals after the intermission.

Draughn continues WHC play on Monday, visiting Avery County.


Draughn 4, NCSSM-Morganton 0: The Lady Wildcats (1-3) scored their first win in shutout fashion in an abbreviated match Wednesday at NCSSM-Morganton.

Draughn won at No. 1 singles with Katie Cozort 8-6, No. 2 singles with Maddison Powell 8-0, No. 3 singles with Jenna Coffey 8-0, and No. 1 doubles with Cozort/Powell 8-0.

DHS began WHC play late Thursday, hosting Owen.

Hibriten 5, Freedom 4: The Lady Patriots (0-6 Northwestern 3A/4A Conf.) narrowly missed out on their first win during Wednesday’s league match at home in Morganton.

Freedom’s wins came at No. 1 singles with Ellie Deacon 7-5, 6-2; No. 2 singles with Emily Kania 6-3, 6-1; No. 6 singles with Delaney Dellinger 6-3, 6-4; and No. 1 doubles with Deacon/Kania 8-5.

FHS continues NWC play on Monday at South Caldwell.


Ashe County 3, Freedom 0: The Lady Patriots (1-14, 1-2 Northwestern 3A/4A Conf.) couldn’t follow their first win with a second, suffering a shutout conference loss Wednesday in West Jefferson, 25-6, 25-14, 25-13.

No more details were available.

Freedom stays in NWC play on Monday, traveling to Watauga.

The News Herald sports department can be reached at

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