AHSAA 1A/2A Cross Country Championships
At Oakville Indian Mounds Park
1. Andrew Sweeney 16:02 (course record)
15. Caleb Guthrey 17:42
23. Joseph Arriaga 18:10
33. Joe McCarthy 18:35
48. Francis Mami 19:07
1. Leahrose Mami 19:24
24. Eva Barck 22:14
43. Sara Barck 23:19
48. Lizabeth Medina 23:33
51. Gracie Loyd 23:37
FLASH NOTES: History was made Saturday morning in Lawrence County with St. Bernard Prep capturing two individual championships in the same season.
Sweeney and Mami have been at their best all season. It continued Saturday morning with windy conditions and temperature in the low 50s.
Sweeney completed a task of winning seven championships during 2017. Coach William Calvert pointed out that Sweeney worked extremely hard for his senior season, following being selected to participate in the inaugural AHSAA All-Star meet in July in Montgomery.
"Being in the all-star run gave him a purpose to train during the summer," Calvert stated. "Andrew is a student of the sport. He looks for everything to help him as a champion."
"It was an amazing race," Sweeney said after he received his medal for being the best in the smallest class this year. "I am proud of everybody for how they ran. I enjoy running. Sometimes I feel like Forrest Gump."
Sweeney will prepare for the track season with indoor meets coming up in December and January, then the outdoor schedule in the spring. Sweeney will perform for cross country and track at University of Alabama-Huntsville next year.
From runner-up to state champion:
In 2016, Leahrose Mami had to settle for runner-up to Whitesburg Christian runner Hannah Tarwater.
Things were reversed on Saturday morning in which the talented Mami matched the same time in the championship as she did a year ago of 19:24. The difference was the pace was a little slow.
At 800 meters, Mami got the lead and never let Tarwater move past her.
Mami had clinched the top spot from the sectional meet in Fairview November 2 with a time of 19:39.
Saturday was the best time of the year for the senior, who was considering of making a commitment in regards to her future as a collegiate runner.
Mami would not disclose the name of the school to Sportspage after the awards ceremony. She will announce it as soon as possible.
Calvert expressed pride in saying these two are well deserving of winning a state individual championship for the prep school the same day.
"They both met all expectations," Calvert said.
Photo 1: Leahrose Mami, Andrew Sweeney, 1A/2A state XC champions.
Photo 2: Andrew Sweeney gets congratulated for winning state championship.
Photo 3: Andrew Sweeney (center) with Nate Collins of Westminster (left) and Kagen Sutton of Hatton (right) at awards podium.
Photo 4: Leahrose Mami gets hugged by her mother and Andrew Sweeney after winning the 1A/2A cross country championship.
Photo 5: Leahrose Mami (center) with Hannah Tarwater (left) of Whitesburg Christian and Hallie Porterfield (right) of Westminster during awards ceremony.
Sportspage photos by Johnny Thornton