5A Girls: Fitzsimmons And Mountain Vista Reign

Jenna Fitzsimmons ran away to defend her state title. 

Jenna Fitzsimmons hovered off the right shoulder of Cherry Creek freshman Riley Stewart through the opening mile in 5:43. On the other side was Cherokee Trail freshman Cameron McConnell

While Fitzsimmons had been flawless against Colorado competition this season, she found herself with a whole new set of challengers this year. Freshmen challengers.

Regardless, the Mountain Vista junior remained business as usual. She had won this race once before, as well as many others. She been to the top of the mountain and back - she knew the way.

While Fitzsimmons was glazed over in that pained-expression that has become her trademark, Stewart and McConnell ran on with blank, concentrated faces that appeared void of pain. From the untrained eye it looked as though we could have a battle on our hands. 

But to the trained eye, Fitzsimmons was still very much in control. 

She pressed hard through the middle mile and shook herself free of everyone except for McConnell, who chased Fitzsimmons just as she had several times earlier this season. Fitzsimmons led the freshman through the second mile in 12:08, and it was clear the race for the state title would come down to one of two. 

But with each stride the race was shifting more and more into the hands of Fitzsimmons, who brought the confidence of having been here before. She knew the terrain, and turns, like the back of her hand. 

Deep within the conflicting chaos of pain and hope of the final mile, Fitzsimmons once again shook herself free of her chaser, and onwards to a dominating title defense.