SALT LAKE CITY -- Orion, Cassiopeia, the Big Dipper, Davis High -- all are recognizable gatherings of stars. Shooting past the competition at the 2013 Utah UHSAA state cross country championship, the Davis girls put together a beautiful race that resulted in a team victory as well as the fastest combined team time ever ran.
The Darts placed five girls in the top ten and seven in the top 20 to score 27 points in their victory. The previous team time record, 93:49, was held by the 1999 Bingham High team. Davis eclipsed that record by more than a minute, running a combined time of 92:27.8.
Their Northern star was freshman Aubrey Argyle -- who placed second overall in 18:09, behind Herriman's nationally-ranked Lucy Biles, 17:41.9.
"It was one of the hardest races," said Argyle. "I didn't feel as good as I usually do. I'm happy with how I did. And my teammates pushed me the whole way."
Argyle was followed by senior Taylor Cox, fourth in 18:18, Ashley Tyndall, eighth in 18:37, McKenzie Weir, ninth in 18:38 and Sierra Graham, 10th in 18:43. Their team was rounded out by Hannah Albrechtsen, 17th in 18:58 and Aimee Vance, 18th in 19:05.
On each girl's left arm, they had the word "Team" and the signatures of their teammates that were running that day.
"We just went out feeling confident. We had our names on our arms and when we got tired, we looked down and realized we have a purpose, someone to fight for," said Tyndall, who ran a personal record on the hilly 3-mile course.
Tyndall was the only returning member of the 2012 Davis High state championship team. She said that at the beginning of the year the team wasn't sure they could repeat last year's performance.
"We didn't think we could come this far," she said. "We just believed in each other and we fought for each other today."
With the win and the record, the girls reaffirmed why they are ranked the No. 1 team in the country by dyestat.com.
"It's so nice to train all year and put it together at the State meet," said coach Corbin Talley.
Final top five team scores were: 1. Davis, 27; 2. American Fork, 90; 3. Jordan, 120; 4. Bingham, 132; and 5. Lone Peak, 132. Syracuse was seventh with 190 points, Weber finished ninth with 254, and Fremont was 11th with 320.
The third local finisher was Northridge sophomore Courtney Wayment, who ran in 18:19, right on the heels of Cox for a fifth-place finish.
Wayment ran as an individual, as the Knights didn't get one of the team spots out of Region 1.
Syracuse's Isabella Williams (18:43) finished 11th, and Sharlie Dimick (19:07) finished 19th. Weber's Lynzi Deeter (19:56) was 33rd, with Sam Heaton (19:58) and Jenny Tidwell (20:21) 34th and 41st, respectively. Fremont's Alexis Terry (20:15) and Jerra Fowers (20:37) broke into the top 50, placing 39th and 47th overall.
The Davis High boys team was upbeat after finishing third when they had hoped for second. American Fork, as predicted, blew the field away, scoring 44 points behind the winning performance of Connor McMillan (15:04).
In a deep race for second, Lone Peak came out on top scoring 82 points, and Davis finished third with 107. Bingham, 115, and Westlake 136 rounded out the top five, with Alta also scoring 136, but losing the tie on the sixth runner. Weber was seventh with 194 points, Fremont was tenth with 272 and Syracuse was 12th with 288.
"Lone Peak put together a great race," said Talley. "We'll take our third, but second would have been nice."
Davis was led by senior Skylar Williams, who finished with a gutsy sprint the last 600 meters. He was sitting in the 12th spot when he decided to fight back and passed enough people to finish eighth with a time of 15:45.
Williams said he was inspired by his dad, Michael Bret Williams, who 30 years ago won the state cross country meet.
"We fought hard," said Williams. "We wanted second but we knew it would be a fight. For not feeling as good as we normally do, it was good. Now we'll look forward to Nike Nationals."
Davis' Josh Ward (15:50) was 12th, Colton Rimann (16:18) was 28th, and Kimball Potter (16:45) was 41st. Weber's Will Palmer (16:24) was 33rd, with teammates Devon Jennings (16:33) and Braedin Butler (16:34), running 38th and 39th. Fremont's Kaden Winter (16:27) was 34th and Caleb Hunt (16:38) was 44th. Syracuse's Cody Kelly (16:40) was 47th.
* 1-A/2-A/3-A ROUNDUP: The UHSAA state 1-A, 2-A, and 3-A cross country meet allowed top of Utah runners to display the work they've done this season as they raced to see who would rise to the top.
In the 1-A race, St. Joseph Cfreshman Meghan Clare had the time of her life, running her first high school state cross country meet. Her time of 21:40 took third place overall.
"I was smiling the whole time. Now I have to wait another year," said Clare, sad that the season was over. "I didn't know what to expect today. I just kept thinking of a quote, 'Finish your dream,' by my hero Cynthia Garcia, a Boston Marathon runner."
Panguitch won the team title, scoring 33 points to Monticello's 67. St. Joseph's girls didn't run a full team.
In the boys 1-A race it was a wall of orange as Monticello won the team trophy, scoring 35 points to Panguitch's 49.
St. Joseph finished fifth overall, scoring 132 points. They were led by sophomore Cayden Jones, who finished 17th in 18:26. His teammates were all in the top 50. Sophomore Chris O'Brien was 25th in 18:37 and Sean Letendre was 26th in 18:37. Josh Stoker was 43rd in 19:37 with Will Carrington 50th in 20:09.
The girls 2-A race was filled with running drama. It was a photo-finish with Millard's Anna Camp tripping into first past Rowland Hall's Emily Sundquist. Their times were 19:16.5 and 19:16.8, respectively. In the team standings, North Summit and Enterprise tied, with the win going to North Summit as their sixth runner was 44th and Enterprise's was 46th.
The boys 2-A race was won by Rowland Hall, scoring 68 points over North Summit's 79 points. Rowland Hall's Ryan Westermann took the win in 16:09.
With Ogden up in the 4-A rankings it was Desert Hills and Park City duking it out for first in the boys 3-A race. Desert Hills won with 49 points. Park City was 73. Bear River was sixth, scoring 210 points. Ben Lomond was 12th with 350 points and Morgan was 16th with 448.
Top of Utah Individuals that scored in the top 50 were Bear River's Luke Summers and Taylor Francom, 23rd in 17:02 and 38th in 17:21. Ben Lomond's Steven Dabb and Adam Heiner, 42nd in 17:30 and 47th in 17:41. Morgan's Andrew Allen, 46th in 17:39. Bear River's Ethan Hurst rounded out the top 50, 50th in 17:43.
In the 3-A girls, race Park City dominated the meet, setting the team time record, which was later broken by Davis.
Park City scored 31 points to second place Cedar's 76. Bear River was seventh, scoring 198 and Morgan was 14th with 360 points. The race was won by Cedar's Aimee Bryson in 17:58.
Three Bear River runners broke into the top 50. Kylie Larkin was 19th in 20:15, Rachel Hughes was 27th in 20:40 and Katelyn Cunning was 44th in 21:23.