The Mustang Broncos took advantage of supreme running conditions last week at the Chile Pepper Festival in Fayetteville, Ark.
Each of Mustang’s seven racers in the El Caliente Race clocked a season-best time, including five under the 22-minute mark, leading the Broncos to 39th overall out of over 60 teams.
“That’s the first time that I know of since I’ve been the coach where we’ve had all five girls under 22 minutes,” Mustang coach Greg Osborne said. “That’s huge for them mentally, knowing that they are capable of those kinds of times.”
Katie Jones (Sr.) led the way for the Broncos.
She finished 149th overall with a time of 20:36.1, notching her best time of the season after passing nearly 90 runners to crack the 21-minute mark. Osborne said Jones can still improve upon that time, which is a positive for the team overall.
Carol Le (Jr.) came in second for Mustang and 181st overall, clocking a time of 20:56.2. It was her first time to break the 21-minute mark.
Londyn Medrano (So.) finished third for the Broncos and 216th overall. She reeled off a time of 21:22.2, just ahead of teammate Emily Krafft (Sr.), who finished 228th overall with a time of 21:30.6.
Emerson Hodde (So.) closed out the team’s placers, finishing 254th overall with a time of 21:59.2. It was her first time to break the 22-minute mark.
“Carol ran great, Londyn ran a PR and has been getting better throughout the season,” Osborne said. “Emily ran a PR and then Emerson closed it out for us. This group right now has a really good split.
“That’s what we want. We want each girl trying to focus on that girl in front of them and trying to stay much closer.”
Madison Smith (So.) and Kiara Smith (Jr.) finished as the team’s displacers, each placing inside the top-300.
Madison Smith finished 281st with a time of 22:44.4 and Kiara Smith finished 300th with a time of 23:28.4.
The Broncos finished with a total time of 1:46:24 and an average time of 21:16.
Osborne said he likes where the team is mentally going into postseason races and is excited to see if the team keeps alive its 26-year streak of qualifying for the state meet.
“They’re just in a much better state of mind,” he said. “That’s everything. For them to have that belief in themselves is huge. They run these times and get better and keep improving and it just means the world mentally.
“We’re excited to make it 27 straight. These next couple of weeks will give us a good idea of where we stand.”
The Broncos continue their season Tuesday in the COAC conference meet at Deer Creek. The starting gun is set to sound at 9 a.m.