By BRETT MARSHALL
SYRACUSE — For Stanton County junior runner Jenna Black, her two-plus years of running high school cross country and track has provided enough highs and lows to last for a long time.
But a bout with mononucleosis midway through that freshman season pretty much knocked her out of the elite level at the end of her freshman year, and there was carry over into the track season. In her sophomore year, health problems continued although Black, her coaches and family, as well as doctors, originally thought she was over the bout with mono.
Something else, though, was keeping her from performing at her peak effort and it was eventually diagnosed that she had an iron deficiency.
Now being treated for that condition, Black is healthier than she's been in some time and on Saturday morning at Tamarisk Golf Course, she looked more like her old self, winning the Syracuse Invitational with a time of 16:55 over the 4-kilometer layout.
"It was pretty windy to begin with," Black said of the chilly weather. "The coldness didn't really help. I just tried to draft off some people and then get them at the end."
Elkhart's Israel Barco captured the boys title with a dramatic last-second burst over the final 40 meters to edge Hugoton's Isaac Castro by one second (18:05 to 18:06) over the 5-kilometer course. Alex Barbossa of Ulysses was a distant third in 18:31.
LAKIN — Cold and wind proved to be the culprits at the Lakin Invitational girls golf tournament on Saturday at Louck's Municipal Golf Course.
In the end, Larned managed to capture the team title and took home the individual medalist honor as well in the seven-team event.
The Lady Indians finished with a total of 401. Host Lakin took second by virtue of a better fifth-player score after the Lady Broncs and Cimarron tied for second at 426. Holcomb was right behind in fourth at 429.
Larned's Tiara Diaz was the only player to break 90, and her 89 was good enough to win by three over Kiah Rash of Syracuse.
For Lakin coach Travis McAtee, the runner-up finish was a signal that his team, which will serve as the host school at the Oct. 21 state, will be right in the thick of the regional tournament race for a team berth to Southwind.
"We're one of the teams that will figure into the regionals," McAtee said. "There's four teams who will compete for those three spots."
We're just right in the midst of the competition."