PALM HARBOR — St. Petersburg freshman Alex Eaton had never run the cross country course at John Chesnut Park and for a while, she had to rely on her own personal GPS:
Savannah Dearden, her senior teammate.
“I was behind her, and I’d just yell left … right … left,” Dearden said, smiling.
At the 2-mile mark, Eaton pulled away from her teammate to pursue race leader Mary Hall of Seminole. She never caught Hall, who won the Cougar Invitational in 20 minutes, 9 seconds, but her third-place finish helped lead the Green Devils to the team championship Tuesday evening.
St. Petersburg placed all five of its scorers in the top 15 to finish with 41 points; Northeast, led by Amanda Spring’s fourth-place finish, finished second with 97.
“It was good to see where we stand,” said coach Brian Cuff. “This is a team with some depth.”
Erin Waterman finished fifth for St. Petersburg, Dearden was sixth and Katie Pelton and Andrea Schmidt were 12th and 15th.
In winning, Hall shaved 15 seconds off her time in last week’s meet at Largo, where she was second.
The boys race was all Seminole. Chase Sutton won in 16:30 (18 seconds faster than last week’s victory at Taylor Park), ahead of Countryside’s Ricy Brown, who took second in a surprising 16:49.
Brian Mayiers (fifth), Jacob Hudak (sixth), Park Suski (10th) and Nick Homme (11th) rounded out the scorers for Seminole.
The Warhawks won the team competition with 33 points. Dunedin, behind top-10 finishes from Shane Deeley (third) and Zach Maciolek (eighth), finished second with 86 points. St. Petersburg’s Cameron Wheeler was fourth.