The fifth-ranked Decatur Eagles didn’t have enough ammunition to keep up with No. 2 Sanger Thursday, but their second-place finish will advance them to the regional meet Nov. 2.
The top three teams along with the top 10 individuals advance to the Region II Championships next Saturday at Lynn Creek Park in Grand Prairie.
Decatur finished with 44 points, while first-place Sanger had 26. Gainesville claimed third with 57.
Decatur’s Taylor Clayton was the overall medalist with a 15:28. Sanger’s Jacob Perry secured second with a 16:05.
The Eagles were short-handed without Brandon Rivera in the lineup, but coach David Park was happy about the way his youngsters performed.
“They all attempted to step up,” Park said. “Tyler [Wilson] and Austin [Poole] both stepped up, We’ve got a freshman in the 17′s that’s never been there before.
“When we get it all back we’re going to be alright. I love the effort and as long as you got the effort, good things are going to happen.”
Wilson finished sixth overall with a time of 17:07 and Poole claimed 11th in 17:40.
Joaquin Aldape clocked a 17:48 for 12th. Parker Cullop was the fifth Eagle to cross the finish line in 14th position with a time of 17:52.
Riley Keller placed 15th in 18:03 and Juan Gamino ran 18:15 for 16th.