TWHS boys, girls XC teams sweep Nike South

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Spencer Gibson

The Boys’ Varsity A team at Bear Branch Park on Saturday, Oct. 5

The girls’ cross country team at Bear Branch on Saturday (Jana Gibson)

The Woodlands annually hosts Nike South, a 3.1-mile course at Bear Branch Sports Fields in The Woodlands. Nike South is typically one of the biggest meets of the year in Texas.

“Due to COVID, and UIL restrictions, we are only allowed to have 8 schools total at any invitational this season (usually we’ll have close to 60 schools represented),” cross country coach Juris Green said. “Not only that but we are restricted to the number of runners from each school per division (varsity, JV, freshman). So this week was the ‘biggest’ meet we could have with 8 schools in attendance.”

Every year dozens of teams from all over the state come in and join together to compete against one another. In past years there have been dozens of competitors that come and run, but with the pandemic, fewer spectators were allowed on the course.

“In previous years teammates would stay to cheer each other on as well as parents,” senior team member Joshua English said. English is an OSU commit for cross country.

The Woodlands boys’ cross country had a score of 44 points, beating out other competitors Katy Tompkins, College Park, Bridgeland, Katy Cinco Ranch, Conroe and Atascocita.

“Our boys (TX 6A #2) won in convincing fashion over four other Texas top-10 teams, led by Chance Gibson, with a 3rd place finish in 15:36. The team averaged 15:53 with contributors Pablo Lesarri, Kyle Easton, Joshua English, Caden Cymbala, Brian Sewell and Carlos Sanchez rounded out our scorers,” Green said.

The TWHS girls’ team also won with 44 points, led by junior Natasha Beijen. Her fifth place finish of 18:34.6 led the team. Just behind her was Brooke Forbes, with a time of 18:54.1.