NWA Fall Sports Notebook: Week 7


Rogers High Cross Country

The Mounties and Lady Mounties have similar issues as they head down the home stretch of the season, coach Carlton Efurd said.<br><br>

Both teams have a solid top three runners, but are still searching for a consistent fourth and fifth to compete at the top of the top of the conference and state.<br><br>

“My top three girls are doing great,” Efurd said. “But we’ve gotta  close the gap between three, four and five if we’re going to compete with the Bentonville’s and Fayetteville’s of the world.”<br><br>

Freshman Ali Nachtigal, along with teammates Emily Efurd and Anna Jeffcoat have been solid all season.  Jeffcoat was the Lady Mounties’ top finisher (45th) in the recent Chile Pepper Festival, followed by Nachtigal and Efurd. <br><br>

However, Tristyn Wann suffered a season-ending injury last week, which seriously hurts the Lady Mounties’ depth, Efurd said. Senior Olivia Breazeale has come on strong.  In addition, Amanda Sakalares, who has been playing golf, could also help. Freshmen Alayna Wicklund and Amy Lawrence are also improving each race.<br><br>

Seniors Andrew and Tyler Bender, along with Braden Sell give the boys a good 1-2-3, but Efurd said they aren’t quite as strong as the girls’ top trio. Sell was the team’s top finished at the Chile Pepper, taking 36th. The Mounties finished 20th out of 81 teams, while the Lady Mounties were 15th out of 74 teams at the Chile Pepper.<br><br>

“The top three are looking good and I’m pleased with how they are competing,” Efurd said. “Again, it’s four and five where there’s too big a gap.”<br><br>

Sophomore William Pender started the season strong, but has tailed off recently and did not compete at the Chile Pepper Festival. Senior Matt Smith, Christian Salazar, along with Andrew Fillister will need to provide that depth.<br><br>

Rogers Heritage Cross Country

Freshman Hailey Day continued to excel for the Lady War Eagles, finished 27th overall at the Chile Pepper Festival. She was the top Arkansan in the prestigious event that draws runners from all over the country.<br><br>

Day ran a time of 19:11.9, well behind two-time winner Victoria Findley’s 17:40.2 of Bue Springs, Mo. But Heritage coach Jeff Shaw said she ran well.<br><br>

“I don’t think she got caught up in the traffic or anything,” Shaw said. “She looks good and I believe she’s ready to run in the 18s. She’s doing workouts with the boys and running strong.”<br><br>

Day ran a personal best by less than a second at the Chile Pepper. She will run this weekend at Van Buren to prepare for the 7A-West Conference meet on Oct. 24.<br><br>

— Paul Boyd • @NWAPaulB

Paul Boyd

Paul Boyd

Sports Reporter at NWA Media
Paul Boyd is a sports reporter for NWA Media. His primary beat is Rogers Heritage, as well as West Fork and Gentry.
Paul Boyd

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