HCHS boys, girls win team titles at race on their home course


Chris Jones

Harlan County’s Sophie Day headed down the hill at the HCHS course on Tuesday on the way to a seventh-place finish.


Both the Harlan County boys and girls were winners on Tuesday in the Harlan County All-Comers race.
The HCHS boys finished with 18 points, ahead of Bell County with 44 and Williamsburg with 66.
Daniel Joseph and Matt Yeary, both of HCHS, took the top two spots with times of 18:34.5 and 19:13.84, respectively. Andrew Yeary, Johann Woodring and Jacob Schwenke finished in the fifth through seventh spots. Dylan Cox led Harlan as he placed 13th.
The HCHS girls finished with 29 points, ahead of Williamsburg with 51, Harlan with 60 and Bell County with 75.
Lynn Camp’s Abby Mabe won for the second time this year on the HCHS course with a time of 22:38.55. Harlan County’s Peyton Lunsford was again second. Harlan’s Mia Pace finished fifth. Harlan County’s Sophie Day and Riley Key placed seventh and eighth, respectively.
“I’m proud of their performance tonight. This was our best team performance by far on both sides,” Harlan County coach Ryan Vitatoe said. “The boys went to the line really focused and ran lights out. This type of focus is critical to their development as a team. We are still without lots of girls for various reasons, but they ran really well tonight also. This was a really good performance for them.”
The Harlan County boys and Harlan girls were winners in the mixed elementary school race.
Harlan’s Harper Carmical was the girls individual winner with a time of 11:57.59 and was followed, in order, by teammates Zoe Lawson, Chloe Brock, Priscilla Stewart, Halle Cox and Cora Jones. Harlan’s Kelsey Smith was ninth and Harlan County’s Natalie Creech finished 10th.
Harlan County’s Tanner Daniels won the boys race with a time of 8:19.34. Harlan’s Cooper Thomas was second. Trey Creech, of HCHS, was third. Harlan County’s Jacob Brock, in fifth, and Carson Sanders, in ninth, were also in the top 10. Harlan’s Canaan Bolton was seventh and Jett Luttrell placed 10th.
Bell County’s Bianca Echeverria and Thomas Walker’s Carder Chasteen were individual winners in the mixed middle school race.
Harlan County’s Luther Gross was the second fastest boy in the race. DaShaun Smith and Xavier Farley, both of HCHS, placed fifth and seventh, respectively.
“I’m very proud of our elementary and middle school teams,” Vitatoe said. “Tanner Daniels is quickly becoming one of the best elementary boys in this part of the state. All our other boys and girls are steadily improving. There are so many who improved by over a minute from their last race. That’s a strong improvement.”


The Harlan County boys placed second and the girls were fourth in the Wayne County Invitational on Saturday.
Southwestern won the boys team title, followed by HCHS, North Laurel and Mercer County.
North Laurel won the girls team title with Southwestern finishing second, Lincoln County third and Harlan County fourth.
Daniel Joseph led the Bears as he placed fifth. Matt Yeary was 11th.
Peyton Lunsford paced the Lady Bears as she finished eighth.
Harlan County’s Tanner Daniels won the elementary school boys race.
“Wayne is always a huge meet with great teams as they are a perennial region host. This is the first time we’ve ever brought home a trophy from this meet,” Vitatoe said. “I’m proud of our guys. Our girls battled hard. I think we were missing seven girls, so to finish in the middle of the pack says a lot about the effort they gave. I think both teams looked tired in the last mile, which is to be expected with three meets in seven days, but they battled hard.”