HANCEVILLE – Wallace State’s cross country teams are Alabama Community College Conference champions for the second year in a row.
In rainy conditions at the University of Montevallo, Wallace State’s men’s and women’s teams each earned perfect scores of 15, convincingly winning the titles over the weekend.
“Everybody ran well and our runners understood what it took to win again. We weren’t worried about times; we were interested in our placement. We were there to win the meet, no matter the conditions,” said coach Stan Narewski. “It was a good day at the office. I’m proud of all of them.”
Wallace State’s men accounted for seven of the top eight finishers in its 8K, securing the seventh conference title for the program.
Wallace State sophomore Hamza Abusammour was named the 2019 ACCC Men’s Runner of the Year after winning the individual title, finishing with a 26:59.07. Abusammour, a Haleyville High School graduate, placed fourth at the conference meet as a freshman.
“Hamza has a lot of fire and grit in him and deserved to win. His teammates were thrilled for Hamza, especially because it looked like injuries may keep him from running this late into the season,” Narewski said.
Tanner King was the men’s runner-up, clocking in at 27:13.62, a year after winning the individual ACCC meet title and being named the 2018 Runner of the Year. King placed runner-up after being hobbled by injuries all season.
Jonathan Jenkins (27:18.05), Jaden Vance (27:48.57), Joshua Jenkins (27:52.09) and Taylor Nails (27:52.09) made up the third through sixth spots for the Lions. Wallace State’s Carson Levario-Slaten (28:08.30) rounded out the top eight.
Trenton Williams finished 10th overall for the Lions with a 28:31.72. Christian Terry (29:07.27), Drake Patton (29:20.66) and Jackson Tucker (29:50.57) finished 12th-14th for Wallace State.
Wallace State’s women had the same success in the 5K, placing seven runners among the top eight. The Lady Lions won their fourth conference championship.
In the women’s meet, Wallace State’s Tatiana Padgett was the individual runner-up, finishing only 11 seconds shy of the overall title with a 20:46.79.
The Lady Lions secured the remaining top spots. Freshman Logan Ayers was third overall, clocking in with a 22:07.07 and Ashleigh White was fourth with a 22:30.05.
Maggie Graham (22:33.75), Makala Worrell (22:35.22), Hannah Huntley (22:45.44) and Malia Howell (22:58.15) rounded out the 5th-8th spots for Wallace State.
Breanna Smith (23:12.89) and Alexandra Holt (23:42.41) were ninth and 10th respectively for the Lady Lions.
Narewski was named the 2019 Men’s and Women’s Cross Country Coach of the Year.
Wallace State now gears up for the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division I Championship on Nov. 9 at Albuquerque, N.M.
Narewski praised the work and guidance his team has received all season from athletic trainer Katy Chauvin.
See complete story in the Northwest Alabamian.