With only two of its top seven runners back from the 2007 cross country edition, Shawnee’s girls were expected to be in a rebuilding mode for the 2008 season.


With only two of its top seven runners back from the 2007 cross country edition, Shawnee’s girls were expected to be in a rebuilding mode for the 2008 season.
Yet entering Saturday’s Class 5A state meet at Edmond’s Mitch Park, Shawnee coach Mark Heard is hopeful of finishing in the top five.
“We’re fresh and enthusiastic going in,” Heard said. “We would probably be ranked at about No. 5, but I think we’re capable of doing better.”
One week ago, Shawnee came in third ­­ – behind champion Harrah and runner-up McGuinness — in the west regional at Marlow.
Heard said that McGuinness — the three-time defending 5A champion — was without two of its better runners because they were taking the ACT.
“McGuinness has to be the favorite to win state,” Heard said. “Coweta won the other regional with Tulsa Kelley coming in second. Both of those squads are strong, along with Harrah.”
Mary Tiger, Shawnee’s only senior, will be one of Shawnee’s seven entrants. Tiger hasn’t competed since the OBU meet on Sept. 27 because of leg problems.
“It’s good to have Mary back,” Heard said. “The other girls look to her. It should encourage them to run well against tough competition.”
Junior Allison Burger had Shawnee’s best regional finish, eighth, and freshman Miranda Dent came in 10th. Shawnee’s other five entrants today — and their regional finishes - are sophomore Javen Bucy, 17th; freshman Jessica Cousins, 19th; sophomore Sarita Jekins, 20th and sophomore Erinn Shaughnessy, 34th.
“I think they will do really well. We have had a phenomenal week of training,” Heard said.
“It was great. We had two practices that were very intense and we ran very well.”
Shawnee’s girls finished fourth at last year’s meet.
The girls meet will begin at noon with the boys slated to compete at 12:45.
Shawnee had two boys qualify for today’s competition.
Freshman Zach Enoch and senior Jonathan Reames will represent the Wolves.
Shawnee’s boys were third at last year’s meet.