Black Bears are winners at home meet

The Harlan County boys cross country team continued its dominance of its home course, claiming a nine-point win in an 11-team all-comers meet Tuesday.

The Black Bears placed three runners in the top six to hold off Wise (Va.) Central High School in one of the largest boys home races in the school’s history, with 73 runners crossing the finish line. Bell County finished in third place.

Harlan County was led by sophomore Caleb Brock, who came in third with a time of 18:36.78. Zack Carmical (19:38.72) and Josh Lee (19:43.09) came in fifth and sixth, respectively. Daniel Joseph (20:50.06) was next for the Bears, in 13th place, followed by Cooper McHargue (15th, 20:53.81), Sean Cooper (16th, 20:54.28) and Matt Yeary (17th, 20:54.72). Rounding out the Bears’ results were Austin Crain (30th, 22:38.78), Lucas Epperson (37th, 23:16.31), James Bailey (40th, 23:41.06), Shaun Warren (45th, 24:11.65), Breydy Daniels (51st, 25:06.06) and Joseph Gordon (72nd, 32:43.41).

Charles David Morton finished 18th with a time of 20:55.78 to lead Harlan. Jarrett Austin (27:26.12) was 62nd.

Central’s Andrew Deel won the race, posting a time of 18:14.28.

The Harlan County girls came in third. Middlesboro edged Central by two points for the win.

Cadance Ferguson paced the Lady Bears with a seventh-place finish, posting a time of 24:43.34. She was followed by Ariel Madden (19th, 27:22.72), Caitlyn Rice (20th, 27:32.18), Abby Vitatoe (22nd, 28:28.25), Baili Boggs (24th, 29:17.34), Katelyn Hensley (27th, 29:50.62), Kassydee Owens (29th, 30:25.02), Lainey Garrett (33rd, 33:59.59) and Hailey Madden (38th, 43:41.78).

Harlan was led by Lucy Bryson, who came in 13th with a time of 26:05.75. Ella Morton was 15th with a time of 26:54.84.

Harlan County’s Haylee Couch finished fourth in the girls middle school race with a time of 17:31.09. She was followed by Jasmine Hill (seventh, 18:44.94) and Taylor Clark (16th, 22:10.87). On the boys side, the Bears were led by Andrew Yeary (fifth, 14:17.28) and Aiden Seals (25th, 19:39.09. Harlan’s Ethan Farley was 19th with a time of 18:33.66.

Dashawn Smith (10:03.34), Bradley Brock (10:10.22) and Tanner Daniels (10:17.00) finished fifth through seventh, respectively, to lead the Bears in the boys elementary school race. Ethan Lewis was 19th with a time of 14:37.66. Harlan was represented in the race by Brody Owens (14th, 12:50.50). Harlan County’s Kaydie Coots (ninth, 13:45.66) and Harlan’s Kaylee Roark (18th, 18:02.44) participated in the girls race.

The Black Bears will return to action Saturday at the Run Between the Forks Invitational in Pikeville.