Let me repeat - six - sophomores broken 18 minutes last year.
That makes this class arguably the most competitive among the girls.
It took a 17:57 to make the Top Six, and an 18:24 to make the Top 10.
Cherokee Trail's Cameron McConnell tops the list with the fastest returning time of 17:17.10 from Desert Twilight. She finished third at state last year, and added two runner-up finishes on the track in the 1,600 and 3,200. Her 2018-2019 resume gives her an ever-so-slight nod as the top returner in the class, though she's got a long list of chasers on on her heels.
Cherry Creek's Riley Stewart was the only Colorado girl to qualify for both Nike Cross Nationals, and Footlocker Nationals last year. Her 17:18.96 PR from last year is just over a second behind McConnell, and she finished one place behind her class rival in the 1,600 and 3,200 this spring.
When it comes to state meets, McConnell is 3-0 against Stewart, though each of those "victories" came at just a few seconds worth of a gap.
And if you thought those two were enough of battle, add Eagle Valley's Samantha Blair to the list.
Blair held the honor as fastest in the class briefly last year with her 17:36 runner-up finish at Liberty Bell. She's got the fastest time run in Colorado among the class. What adds to Blair's danger on the course is her versatility - she finished third at state this spring in the 800, 8th in the 1,600, and fifth in the 300 hurdles.
In case you thought you read that last line wrong, you didn't - a 17:36 5ker finished fifth in the state in the 300 hurdles.
I'm picking up the scent of a future steeplechaser in the air...
Add Emily Beckner and Lanie Szuch to this list and the sophomore class is shaping up to be the most loaded with quality and quantity.
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