Three runners have been leading the pack for the unbeaten Olentangy Liberty High School girls cross country team.

Three runners have been leading the pack for the unbeaten Olentangy Liberty High School girls cross country team.

Freshman Gracie Sprankle has won four of five races, with sophomore Emma Bower winning the other. Senior Claire Linn has been no worse than seventh in her five races for the Patriots, who were ranked third in last week's Division I state poll behind Centerville and Mason.

Sprankle started by winning the 13-team Panther Division of the Pickerington Classic on Aug. 29 at Pickerington North in 18 minutes, 48.1 seconds, with Bower second (18:49.1) and Linn fourth (19:36.7). The Patriots scored 50 points to finish ahead of runner-up Dublin Jerome (75).

Sprankle (18:39.22), Bower (18:41.62) and Linn (19:54) finished in the top three places as Liberty (19) won the nine-team Westerville North Classic on Sept. 5 ahead of runner-up Upper Arlington (59).

On Sept. 12, the Patriots (47) won the 27-team Division I race of the McGowan Invitational at Watkins Memorial ahead of runner-up Thomas Worthington (64). Sprankle (18:21.49), Bower (18:21.99) and Linn (19:07.29) finished 1-2-3 for the second consecutive week.

Bower earned the win Sept. 19 in the Central Ohio Invitational at Three Creeks Metro Park, finishing in 18:21.52 as Sprankle was second (18:36.63) and Linn was fourth (19:26.17). Liberty (31) won the 11-team Division I race, with Pickerington Central (103) second.

In the 27-team Strongsville Invitational on Sept. 26, Sprankle won (18:06.67) and Bower was second (18:08.59) as the Patriots finished first (85) ahead of runner-up Beavercreek (148). Linn was seventh (18:44.37), followed by Sarah Colvin (31st, 19:51.46), Meghan Piero (43rd, 20:14.53), Emily Matta (46th, 20:17.19), Madeline Ailes (57th, 20:28.43), Micayla Gammon (92nd, 21:00.86) and Alexandra Milheim (115th, 21:30.66).

The boys team last competed Sept. 19 in the Galion Festival, finishing eighth (222) of 26 teams in the Division I race behind champion Louisville (92). Mitchell Towne was 22nd (16:23.6), followed by Logan Boone (34th, 16:41.9), John Ropchock 35th, 16:44.1), Luke Wojciechowski (63rd, 17:09.2), Quinlan Pollock (68th, 17:12.9) and Ryan Milligan (86th, 17:28.4).

Pioneers have two champs at Pickerington

Orange had the individual champions in the boys and girls races in the 11-team Tiger Division of the Tiger Invitational on Sept. 26 at Pickerington Central.

Hunter Moore (16:01.89) won the boys race as the Pioneers (39) took the team title ahead of second-place Pickerington Central (45).

Allison Guagenti (19:09.84) won the girls race as Orange finished third (65) behind Gahanna (44) and Pickerington Central (58).

Brandon Morrow (fourth, 16:40.87) was next for the boys, followed by Tommy Heiden (seventh, 16:55.93), Jack Schiefelbein (13th, 17:16.94), Tyler King (14th, 17:23.13), Matt Hartzell (13th, 17:25.8) and Josh Brooks (18th, 17:30.44).

Lindsey Ott (third, 20:01.09) was next for the girls, followed by Zoe Bond (13th, 20:54.58), Grace Frye (21st, 21:18.47), Hannah Dieker (27th, 21:52.83), Elizabeth Schneider (28th, 21:55.77) and Lindsay Brandt (30th, 22:02.07).

Braves girls finish seventh at Galion

Lex Brookshire (12th, 19:15.2) led the Olentangy girls to a seventh-place finish (229) behind champion Lexington (47) in the 24-team Division I race at Galion.

Melina Endsley (30th, 19:57.9) was next for the Braves, followed by Chloe Murdock (54th, 20:33.3), Katie Slyh (57th, 20:34.6), Morgan McCandless (76th, 21:04.6), Kendall Supinger (91st, 21:33.5) and Ellie Jansen (97th, 21:38.9).

The boys were 13th (368) at Galion. Competing were Anthony Sasso (17th, 16:20.1), Alex Garner (54th, 17:02.1), Zach Balthaser (62nd, 17:09), Jeremy Kendle (114th, 17:52.7), Grant Maddox (121st, 17:59.5), Tyler Reed (129th, 18:11) and Carter Schaefer (133rd, 18:16.6).