LARGO — At the start of the Class 4A, District 5 boys race, Seminole’s Jacob Hudak sprinted to the lead. After the first mile, he widened the gap so much that he ended up racing more against the clock than the competition.
Hudak’s goal was to run a sub-16-minute race. He did that — barely. In a mad dash toward the finish line, Hudak won in 15 minutes, 59.20 seconds.
“I was running by myself through most of the race,” Hudak said. “That’s been the case in most races this year, but I know I’ll have more competition next week (at regionals).
“I knew I was close to my goal and just ran like crazy at the end to get there.”
Hudak’s teammate, Nicholas Homme, was second in 16:30.31, followed by Countryside’s Paul McKenna (16:35.39), Palm Harbor University’s Luke Buschman (16:45.11) and St. Petersburg’s Sam Chandler (16:53.22).
The Warhawks had four runners in the top eight and seven in the top 13. That was more than enough to win the team title as Seminole scored 28 points, 45 ahead of St. Petersburg.
In the girls race, the Green Devils’ Alex Eaton surged ahead from the start and enjoyed a comfortable lead to win in 19:33.78.
But her victory was not exactly the best of times.
“It was really an off race for me,” Eaton said. “I was hoping to get under 19 minutes. It’s just been a long week with a lot of tests and homework. I wasn’t getting enough sleep and it took its toll.”
Palm Harbor University’s Sarah Raymond was second 20:01.60 and Seminole’s Rachael Hayduke was third in 20:17.06. PHU’s Brianna Paczynski (20:36.94) and Seminole’s Jasmine Whitney (20:37.04) rounded out the top five.
The Warhawks had three runners in the top six and won the team title, outscoring the Hurricanes 35-48.