Northcutt, Stinson narrowly miss out on All-State honor at state cross country meet
From Staff Reports

Nov. 14, 2005 - ROUND ROCK - Eight seconds doesn't seem like a long time unless you're riding a bull or running at the state cross country meet.

Sulphur Springs junior Graham Northcutt fell just eight seconds short of his goal of placing in the top 15 at the UIL state meet on Saturday, as he finished 22nd on the 3.1-mile course at Old Settler's Park.

Northcutt finished in a time of 16 minutes, 46.10 seconds. The 15th-place clocking was 16:38.

"Graham did very well," said SSHS head coach Andy Holt. "He was shooting to be in the top 15 - he wasn't able to do that, but he competed extremely well."

Northcutt concluded a season in which he won the District 12-4A meet, leading the Cats to a district championship, and was eighth at the Class 4A, Region II meet after battling through flu-like symptoms.

Holt said the effects of the illness may have lingered into Saturday. The runners also had to fight through a strong wind the made times slower than anticipated.

"I think he still kind of struggled from being sick," Holt said, "and he showed a lot of courage and guts to perform they way he did."

This was the second year Northcutt had qualified for the state meet. Last year, he placed 36th.

In other classifications, Como-Pickton sophomore Bethanie Stinson also narrowly missed out on placing in the top 15 - which is considered All-State - as she came in 17th in Class 2A.

She was just five seconds off a 15th-place finish.

Stinson, also running in her second state competition, ran a personal best time of 12:15.65 for the two-mile course.

Stinson's coach, Tim Butts, said the winning time of 11:18.0 turned in by Loren Hodges of Paradise was a Class 2A state record, and the top three runners were all in the top 10 times ever ran in the classification.

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