Team Nationals Girls Quick Recap: Saratoga Springs Dominates


PORTLAND, Ore. | One of the country's storied programs added to its recent success Saturday morning amid cold and windy conditions. 

Saratoga Springs soared across the country as favorites to claim the Team Cross National title, and they soared over the competition to do just that.

With four returning from their 2019 squad who won nationals, Saratoga Springs blitzed the field with an impressive 1-5 spread of just 23-seconds. 

Emily Bush led the squad with a 30th-place finish, which was just ahead of McKinley Wheeler's 33rd-place finish. Alycia Hart finished 42nd, while Sheridan Wheeler finished 46th to give Saratoga Springs four in front of anyone else's No. 2.

While the team race appeared all but wrapped up, Anya Belisle closed the door, finishing 59th to solidify Saratoga Springs' US No. 1 ranking

Saratoga Springs claimed the title with 81 points.

With the team title decided, the question shifted as to how everyone else would fare, as US No. 2 Buchanan and US No. 3 Niwot were also in the field. 

The answer was this one came down to single digits, and it went to Niwot.

The Colorado squad tallied 109 points to take the runner-up spot - a program best. Buchanan was third just seven-points back in 116.

Meanwhile, Irene Riggs stated her intentions early. 

The Morgantown senior set a hot early pace, leaving the pack to decide on whether or not to pace themselves, or give chase. 

Within the first kilometer Riggs held a lead of several seconds, and it only lengthened from there. The Morgantown senior used the second mile to put this race away. 

Heading into the final mile her lead was nearly 100 meters. 

While Riggs was off running in her own race, a pack of three battle it out for the two remaining podium spots.