The smile that was painted across Mia Mraz's face said it all: it feels good to win.
The Legacy junior picked up the first win of her high school career, and she did it with strategic precision.
While the boy's race appeared to be over before they left the track 300 meters into the race, the girl's race was a chess match.
The opening mile saw a loose lead pack that cruised over the course in unison.
But even this early, it was clear that Mraz was itchy to test the field.
The Legacy junior threw a gradual surge through the second mile, which stretched the pack. Only Thomas gave chase, while Welsch and Ross ran on in tandem several seconds back.
"I was going by feel," Mraz explained.
The Legacy junior ran on with her intentions in front of her, unaware that she was very well on her way to dominating the competition over the final mile.
Heading into the final mile she ran on without any shadows, and it was only in the final half mile did she realize that she was on her way to her first victory.
"I told myself no matter how tough this gets, I can keep this lead," she said.
Mraz entered the stadium clear of her chasers with a smile stretched across her face. As she rounded the final curve the Legacy boy's squad lined the final straightaway, cheering her on while making "W" hands for "Win."
"I've never won a race before," she said. "I was really enjoying the moment."
Mraz had her moment, claiming the first win of her high school career. And she did it by simply running away from everyone. Her winning time of 21:26 was 20-seconds ahead of her nearest competitor.
The win gave Legacy a sweep of the individual races.
Behind her a hot race was brewing.
Jefferson Academy's Ross torched the final mile to fly by Broomfield's Thomas. Ross sprinted around the track for a runner-up finish in 21:46.
The late-surge brought teammate Welsch along for a third-place finish as well, running 21:51.
Legacy took the team title to make it a full sweep of the individual and team races. Jefferson Academy finished second, while Broomfield finished third.