Oh, so close...
Colorado's freshman-phenom Erik Le Roux nearly pulled off the feat of claiming a Great Southwest title his first year in Colorado green.
The Cheyenne Mountain freshman made his intentions known early.
Le Roux led a tight pack through the opening lap in a modest 66-seconds after the once big pack quickly broke into two packs.
The lead pack of eight nipped at his heels through the second lap, as the freshman proved to have no problem leading the field.
Le Roux and company cruised through the halfway point just over 2:14 as it appeared that nearly the top eight were all still in the hunt. Le Roux sat back for the first time in the race and hovered in the second position through the third lap, as he revved up his engine for the big kick.
Heading into the bell lap it was down to three as they clipped off a 66-second lap, crossing the finish line in 3:20.
The trio kicked hard down the backstretch dropping down to two: Le Roux and Spanish Fork senior Wyatt Evans. Le Roux climbed up onto Evans' shoulder with 250 to go, but was met with an equal challenge.
Evans kept Le Roux on the outside, though Le Roux responded once more with another surge with 200 to go to reclaim the lead.
Heading into the final straight Le Roux had a clear view of the finish line, but Evans wasn't done yet...
The Spanish Fork senior went out into the Lane Of High Hopes and emptied out his gas tank.
In the end, age prevailed, as Evans was able to inch away from Le Roux in the final 50 meters. Evans took the win in 4:23.22, just ahead of Le Roux's 4:23.97.