Cole Sprout ran away with the state title, and a new course record of 15:16.
The Norris Penrose Center was quiet for a brief moment. The stands were packed, but everyone occupying a seat held their breath, waiting. Among them was Cole Sprout's mother, Beverly, who anxiously eyed the opening where she hoped her son would emerge without a shadow.
Just outside the stadium the Valor Christian junior was pumping his arms like a prize fighter as he bound up the final dirt hill. His eyes were squinting in concentration and nearly everyone he passed cheered for him.
"Go Cole!" they screamed, even if they weren't on his team, or never met him. The fastest runner in the country has earned a following of the masses, and Saturday morning everyone was cheering for him.
While Sprout was running free from a field that had likely thrown in the towel chasing him and decided to run for second, he wasn't satisfied - not yet. Sprout was chasing Charlie Perry's 5A course record of 15:36 set last year.
Ever the competitor, a win alone wasn't enough for Sprout.
When Sprout turned right and headed into the stadium, the stands erupted. The clock ticked, but his powerful stride brought him closer the finish line, and to breaking the record. The crowd cheered him on as it was clear nearly everyone was a fan.
All eyes went back and forth between the clock, those bright red numerals moving on, and Sprout, who chased them across the line in a full flex of his domination. But it was clear the record would be his.
Not only was the time a new 5A course record, but it was an all-classification record.