Official Start of Season for Marcus Cross 2015

Dateline August 22, 2015, Flower Mound, TX: A long, hot, summer season of miles 008  and early morning training runs culminated at this Saturday’s late night annual “Start of Season” (SOS) Mile – the last Saturday of summer vacation.

The SOS Mile signals the passing of one season, the summer “off-season”, to the next one, “in-season”, at last.

And the 2015 Marcus Cross Girls’ and Boys’ teams each proved to the MXC fans and faithful attending the SOS Mile that this summer’s season of training was not for naught or done casually, but rather has been a summer of purpose and one that has delivered seasonal dividends.

The girls were up first and did not disappoint. In its long and storied 30-year

history, MXC has had ten or fewer girls run a 5:20 or faster mile. This night five girls did so, the greatest number ever achieving that time in a single SOS Mile. And one smashed the school SOS Mile record, running it in under 4:50. The second seven runners also ran faster than any other second seven in school history. Not too shabby, and hopefully a fortuitous sign of good things to come for the upcoming season.

The guys delivered a similarly impressive feat. Each of the first seven runners, who by

their finish earned Varsity rights for next week’s Marcus I Invitational, each ran a personal best, a PR, for the mile.

With the “regular” season beginning next week at Marcus I, the hope is that a great Start of

Season will be a harbinger of a similarly great season on the road ahead.




21 Days and Counting Down to the Marcus I Invitational

49122_fullWe hope your team’s training is going well, and we’ll see you on Saturday morning August 29th at the 27th Edition of the Marcus I Invitational (M1) in Denton, TX at North Lake Parks. The first race is the Girls’ Elite Varsity Race at 7 AM and will feature, among others, two teams that finished one-two at District, Region, State, and Nike South Regional (qualifying each team for Nike Nationals). So if you don’t want to miss that race, please don’t be late.

May the Course Indeed B w/ U! From Marcus I 2012

Prosperous Glad Tiding from some Prosper gals! We really should run a Best Team Spirit Sign Contest – shouldn’t we? So, this year, let’s have some fun!!! Bring out your signs for the 2015 M1 Run!

Because (1) we’re hoping for a great turn-out to see all the day’s races, (2) paved parking is limited, and (3) we’re operating under a new race format, please plan to come out early to make sure you are parked and don’t miss a second of the day’s action.

For complete details, including some parking tips, please visit the Marcus I Invitational Page. FYI – We learned some lessons on traffic flow last year, so we’re rolling out a new parking game plan this year. You will want to review it before coming out to the meet — it’s detailed on the Marcus I Invitational Page and a printable copy is available on this page: Directions and Parking Instructions & Diagram.

Important Note: This year we’re adopting a new race format to help ease how crowded the JV races have become at M1. The consequence is that many schools will be running teams in races #1 through #8, even race #9, of nine, meaning that many teams and their fans will be sticking around for the entire event, and fans therefore will need to come out early to be parked for the first race and there is likely to be less parking turn-over this year with the new format. Thus, you really do want to come out early this year to get parked and ready for the day’s races. Also, fans and parents will want to find out from your runner which event your runner is competing in. Here’s the order of races:

  1. GIRLS ELITE VARSITY – max 7 runners – 7 AM Start Time, rolling thereafter
  2. BOYS ELITE VARSITY – max 7 runners
  3. GIRLS OPEN VARSITY – max 7 runners
  4. BOYS OPEN VARSITY – max 7 runners
  5. GIRLS ELITE JV – max 7 runners
  6. BOYS ELITE JV – max 7 runners

AUG 29 – first race 7 AM – Marcus I Invitational, 27TH EDITION @ North Lakes Park, Denton,TX 


Street Address (for BUSES): 2001 W Windsor Dr, Denton, TX. 

Street Address (for OTHER VEHICLES):  ‎North Lakes Park Drive at 3048 N Bonnie Brae St, Denton, TX 76207 (Fans, for parking, please use this address for park access for all car parking under our new traffic plan.)

DETAILS – Coaches/Fans/Parents: for Marcus I Race Details & Info, see Marcus Invitational I page)

Be There, Aloha!!!


First Race, Marcus I Invitational 2012… Ladies and Gents, it’s time again to start your engines.

The Rear View Mirror Report on MXC’s Stellar 2014 XC Season


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Flashback to December 2014, Portland, OR: The Lady Marauders competed in Portland at Nike Cross Nationals for the first time in program history, finishing 21st. This was the capstone to a stellar program year for both the Boys’ and Girls’ Marcus XC teams.

To recap the season, let’s start with the Boys’ JV team, which had a truly phenomenal year:

  • 3rd @ Marcus I
  • 1st @ Boswell Pioneer
  • 1st @ McKinney Boyd
  • 1st @ Marcus II
  • 1st @ The Colony
  • 6th @ Nike South JV-1 Open Division
  • 1st @ Flying Hawks
  • 1st @ District – Your JV Boys District Champions!
  • 12th @ Nike South Regional in the JV Open Division

That’s six Firsts, one Third, and a District Championship. It would really be hard to do any better. Well done, gentlemen!

The Girls’ JV team had a not-too-shabby season as well:

  • 2nd @ Marcus I
  • 1st @ Boswell Pioneer
  • 8th @ McKinney Boyd (the Varsity had the day off, so every team moved up a division on this day – very nice showing for the team given the extractions)
  • 1st @ Marcus II
  • 1st @ The Colony
  • 4th @ Nike South JV-1 Open Division
  • 1st @ Flying Hawks
  • 1st @ District – Your JV Girls District Champions!
  • 5th @ Nike South Regional in the JV Open Division

That’s pretty exceptional, with five Firsts, one Second, a District Championship, and a top 5 finish at the Nike South Regional. Again, it would really be pretty darn hard to do any better. Well done, ladies!

The Boys’ Varsity had to overcome adversity, with multiple varsity athletes starting the season on the IR (injured reserve), and a team captain having an emergency appendectomy after the first race. But the IR members all made it back by the end of the season, resulting in a fantastic upward trend that brought great joy and excitement to MXC run fans:

  • 3rd @ Marcus I
  • 1st @ Boswell Pioneer
  • 5th @ McKinney Boyd Elite Division
  • 2nd @ Marcus II
  • 1st @ The Colony
  • 6th @ Nike South Invitational Elite Division
  • 1st @ Flying Hawks
  • 1st @ District – Your Varsity Boys District Champions!
  • 3rd @ Region – Finishing on the Medal Stand!!!
  • 8th @ State – hard-fought, great finish
  • 7th @ Nike South Regional in the Elite Division

That’s four Firsts, one Second, two Thirds, a District Championship, a medal stand finish at Region, and top 10 finishes at State and Nike South Regional. Given the adversity the team had to overcome due to health issues, this was an incredibly rewarding year. Well done, gents!

The GirlsVarsity had a dream season, one of the best in Marcus Cross history. As noted above, no Marcus Girls team had ever earned an invite to Nike South Nationals and this team accomplished that and much, much more. Here’s a run down on a year for the record books:

  • 1st @ Marcus I
  • 1st @ Boswell Pioneer
  • 1st @ McKinney Boyd Varsity Division (rested top runners, did not run in Elite Div.)
  • 1st @ Marcus II
  • 1st @ The Colony
  • 1st @ Nike South Invitational Elite Division – first time in program history to win this race
  • 1st @ Flying Hawks
  • 1st @ District – Your Varsity Girls District Champions!
  • 1st @ Region – Your Varsity Girls Region Champions!
  • 2nd @ State – Silver Medalists
  • 2nd @ Nike South Regional in the Elite Division – Silver Medalists, highest finish ever in this race
  • 21st @ Nike Cross Nationals – first ever appearance in this race for the Lady Ms.

That’s eight Firsts (including a first ever win at the Nike South Invitational), two Seconds (Silver Medals at State and the Nike South Regional), a District Championship, a Region Championship, and a first ever invite to the Nike Cross Nationals. Simply an outstanding season. Well done, gals!

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Given how truly exceptional last year was, it really will be hard to top that, but…, one can hope that the magic of 2014 rolls over to 2015.

Thanks for the memories 2014 Marcus Cross, and here’s to the 2015 Marcus Cross squad and its quest to make comparable memories. May the Force and the Course Be With You!!!

Pics from Nike Nationals follow:


2015 Celebrate Highland Village 1K Fun Run & 5K Race – June 6th

Yes, it’s that time! The Celebrate Highland Village 5K is coming Saturday June 6, 2015. This is the 10th year the Marcus Cross Country and Track Booster Club has sponsored and organized this event!

1K Fun Run & 5K Race 

Saturday, June 6, 2015, 7:30 a.m.

Unity Park, 2200 Briarhill Blvd.

Highland Village, TX 75077

Online registration: 

  • MXC Booster Club President, Dawn Reed

Your help and support are most appreciated!


And the help and support of our Sponsor’s is especially appreciated:

2015 Celebrate Highland Village Sponsors

Marcus Cross Country

Luke’s Locker

Bradley Chiropractic


Compton Time and Measure

Cryo Clinic


Lutz Running

Molly Skin Fix

Rapid Med


Speedy Bee

Please join us and our Sponsors to help make this year’s event the best ever, continuing a fine tradition and the great partnership of Highland Village, TX, Marcus Cross Country and Track Booster Club, and our fantastic sponsors and participants.

2015 Marcus I Invitational & 2015 Marcus II Invitational Dates Set

Dateline April 30, 2015, Flower Mound, Texas: Dates have been set for the 2015 Marcus I Invitational Cross Country Meet and the 2015 Marcus II Invitational Cross Country Meet. Please mark these dates down in your calendar and “Be There, Aloha!” We hope to see you at the Levee (Marcus I) and down by the Lake (Marcus II). Get your summer running in, and bring it!

27th Edition – Marcus I Invitational, Saturday, August 29, 2015

  • Start Time: TBD
  • Location: North Lakes Park, DentonTX MAP:  – Street Address: 2001 W Windsor Dr, Denton, TX ‎
  • Details: Coaches, Fans, Parents, Athletes – for 2015 Marcus I Race Details & Info, MXC will post the Meet Info Sheet to this website as soon as it is finalized; meanwhile, for reference, feel free to review last year’s 2014 Marcus I Invitational – Aug. 30th, 2014 webpage)
  • Contact Info: MXC Booster Club President, Dawn Reed,

V Girls Marcus I 2014-SLV-6

#? Edition – Marcus II Invitational, Saturday, September 19, 2015

  • Start Time: TBD
  • Details: Coaches, Fans, Parents, Athletes – for 2015 Marcus II Race Details & Info, visit the Marcus II Invitational September 19, 2015 page.
  • Contact Info: MXC Booster Club President, Dawn Reed,


MXC Banquet Date Set; How to Watch MXC Ladies @ Nike Nationals Sat. Dec 6th

Two things of note for MXC fans:

1) The Marcus Cross Country Banquet date and time have been set – details as follows:

Friday, JAN 30 – 630 PM – Crossroads Bible Church, near Chinn Chapel at 8101 Justin Road, Double Oak, TX 75077

Invitation and info about how to help out with the event to follow.

2) To watch the girls run at Nationals, here’s some helpful info (we’re assuming that all times below are Pacific, so add two hours for local Central time zone viewing):

Saturday, December 6, 2014
Glendoveer Golf Course, Portland OR

9:30am Pacific: Webcast Starts
10:05am: Girl’s Championship Race
11:35am: Boy’s Championship Race
12:45pm: Community Race
* Awards to follow each race
* Schedule subject to change

Read more: – Nike Cross Nationals Official Site – NXN – Meet Info – Meet Info

Webcast likely to be found on the Nike Nationals webpage at:

Good luck to the Lady Marauders at Nike Nationals!


Marcus Ladies Earn Nationals Spot, Men Continue Rankings Rise, at Nike South Regional

Dateline November 22, 2014, The Woodlands, Texas: At the Nike South Regional 310Championship, a five state regional covering Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas, to determine which two teams will earn spots at the Nike National Championship race in two weeks time, both Marauder teams performed extremely well and the Lady M’s punched their first ever ticket for a trip to run in the “Rose City”, Portland, Oregon.

Weather forecasts had predicted severe weather, with heavy rains and thunderstorms, for race day. But, while the Houston area was 378blanketed with rains immediately before and after the race, the inclement weather held off to provide pleasant race conditions with temps in the lower to mid-sixties under gray skies, and no rain, drizzle or mist. However, due to the prior day’s rains, the race course was saturated and muddy.

To accommodate the potential for bad weather hitting at any moment, the race schedule was modified and the Boys’ Championship race was held first. The Marauder Men fought their way through a crowded field of talented teams to 198improve on the team’s strong Texas State Championship 8th place finish to move up to 7th place for the Nike South Region, finishing as the 5th fastest Texas-based team. From where the team was ranked at the beginning of the season (10th in the Texas CC Coaches poll), and the fact that some key members had to overcome injuries and health issues during this Fall’s campaign, the team’s performance today closed out a most satisfying season.

We’ll take a look back at the MXC season highlights when the Marauders shut down operations for the year, but thanks to the Lady Marauders’ performance in the Girls’ Championship race, this season isn’t over as the Lady M’s have one more race to run, the Nike National Championship.

_DSC7698The Ladies fought through a star-studded field to finish second with a score of 101, 27 points behind fellow LISD and District 6-6A member first place finisher Hebron (74) and 34 points ahead of third place finisher Kingwood (135), repeating the order of the Texas State Class 6A Championship two weeks earlier. For the Lady M’s, Maddy Reed earned 2nd Team All-Region honors finishing 10th overall, and Quinn Owen earned 3rd Team All-Region honors finishing 17th overall. All the scoring Lady M’s finished in the top 40 team participant spots and persevered through the mud-bath to take one of the two coveted Nike Nationals spots.

In the Boys’ Open Race (combined results), the JV Guys team finished 12th overall, 302notwithstanding a start that resulted in two Marauders talking a severe spill along the way, approximately 100 meters out, risking being trampled by the tail-half of the crowded starting field. Both downed Marauders, Cole Klashinsky and Devin Allen, managed to get up and shake off their scary tumble to finish the race. Cole did such a great job overcoming 308adversity that he actually led the Marauder JV squad, battling his way through the field to finish 29th out of 454 overall runners.

Fortunately, the JV Gals team didn’t have to deal with extreme adversity in their race, and the JV Lady M’s placed 355extremely well, finishing 5th overall (Open Race combined results). The Junior Ladies’ squad was led by Mallory Meiners who finished 8th overall, earning a spot on the medal 425stand as a Top Ten Finisher.

For results, see:

For the guys, it’s time to celebrate a season that closes on a high note as the Marauders continued their upward trajectory that saw the team continually overcome the odds and the field.

And for the senior Lady M’s, it’s time to sing their praises while they keep training and running for their appointment in the Rose City at the 11th Annual Nike National Championship. Celebrations and shout outs are in order for the gals as this is just the second Marcus team in the eleven year Nike Nationals history to earn this incredible honor, joining the 2010 Boys team which finished 10th at Nationals that year. The Lady M’s are ranked 15th in the nation today, so let’s hope the course and the force is with them two weeks from now, December 6th, at Portland, Oregon’s Glendoveer Golf Course when they toe the line for a run at the national championship.


State Fares Well for Marcus as Ladies Take Silver and Guys Work an 8th Wonder

Dateline November 8, 2014, Round Rock, Texas: This Saturday at the Texas State 266Class 6A Cross Country Championship, the Marcus Marauder teams both performed extremely well on a sunny, breezy day with race time highs in the lower 70s.

The Lady Marauders led off and scored a spirited 76 points for second place and the Texas State team silver medal, for which all MXC celebrates and is quite proud. The gals were paced by Maddy Reed who finished 9th overall (team score of 5) making the individual medal podium. She was joined, as Second Team All-State CC members, by Peyton Brown finishing 11th 203overall (team score 7) and Quinn Owen finishing 13th overall (team score 8). Also scoring and finishing in the top 50 runners were Emily Jeacock (35th overall for 25 team points) and Ashton Hutcherson (44th overall for 31 team points). Rounding out MXC’s runners were Miranda Vaash (team score 89) and Emilia Ferreyra (team score 98). Joining Marcus on the team medal stand was Hebron, finishing first, just eight points ahead of Marcus with a team score of 68, and Kingwood, finishing third, 28 points behind Marcus with a team score of 104. Fellow District 6-6A member, Flower Mound, finished 6th overall, and fellow Region I member, Southlake Carroll, finished 4th, emphasizing the strength of NTX’s local cross country competition.

The Marauder guys ran next and finished in 8th place with a team score of 193. The guys were led again by Logan Hendrix who finished with a team score of 8 and 11th overall, just off 279the medal podium, but earning Second Team All-State honors. Rounding out the M’s team scoring were Luke Page – 39, Cameron Blackmon – 43, Brady Steele – 47, and Benson Merrill – 56. Closing things out for the Marauders were Alec Blair – 65 and Andrew Duffy – 76. The team finished 76 points behind third place College Park (117), with 1st place going to Southlake (94) and 2nd going to The Woodlands (105). Given the ground the boys have had to cover this year due to injuries, all of MXC also celebrates and is quite proud of just how well 323the guys performed at State, continuing to work wonders on an out of this world upward trajectory.

And that’s important, because faring well at State is of good portent owing to the fact that State isn’t the farewell performance of the cross country season. Far from it. Both teams have earned invites to the Nike South Regional, a multi-state qualifier meet for the Nike HS Cross Country National Championship held in Portland, Oregon in early December. At the Nike South Regional to be held in two weeks in The Woodlands, the top ten individual runners, and the top two teams, for both the guys and the gals, will earn a ticket to the Nike National Championship. So neither team will be shutting things down. Rather, these next two _DSC7390weeks, both teams will be back at training, joined by other team members who will be running the Nike South Regional JV race. So, time to keep all options open and all dreams alive, and remember what the Happy Warrior (US VP Hubert Horatio Humphrey) had to say: “Before the fact is the dream.” So Go Marcus: Train On, Dream On, Run On!!!

DeManniquinn’s Message for MXC

From Day 1 of this cross country season to present, Janet Marcus DeMannequinn, the first lady of TX HS Cross, has been singularly focused, and so has Marcus Cross.

As a sign of the times, her 2014 message for MXC was simple…CC BBQ 2014

Executing on that isn’t so simple. To get to State, it takes a lot of hard work and sweat equity, a good bit of luck, prayer, daily perseverance, and an ability to deal with adversity and overcome all obstacles. MXC took Janet D’s 2014 message to heart and has been “on message” all season.

To paraphrase another Janet, “The road to Round Rock is long, but you ran it.” Having run your way to State, it’s time now to “Run Like a Champion” and leave it all out there.

Good luck and have lots of fun! “Embrace the Race!”

And remember that a guy named Disney once said “If you can dream it, you can do it” So, keep dreaming, and dare to dream big.

May the force and the course be with you, and may you all B GR8T @ State!



Event: Texas State Cross Country Championship @ Lakeview Pavillion, Old Settlers Park, Round Rock, TX


Street Address: Lakeview Pavillion, Old Settlers Park, off Harrell Parkway, Roundrock, TX

Race Times:

  • Girls 6A Texas State Cross Country Championship 12:30 PM
  • Boys 6A Texas State Cross Country Championship 1:00 PM

Directions: I-35 south to Round Rock. Exit on Hwy 79, exit 253 and turn left (go east on Palm Valley Road). Go 3.2 miles to Old Settlers Park. The park is on the left. Parking is at Dell Diamond with a shuttle service to the course. The course is about 1 mile into the park.

Parking: @ the Dell Diamond Stadium Lot, $5 per car.

Shuttle Bus to Course: Free

Race Admission Fee: $5 per person

Advice: Plan on it taking some time to drive from I-35 exit 253A (on to highway 79, East Palm Valley Road) to the Dell Diamond (there will be traffic), get parked, take the shuttle bus to the race course, and then find the teams to wish them good luck before the first race. It should be very doable with a 7 AM FloMo departure. Consider bringing a folding chair, some water and maybe even a picnic lunch. It should be a great day to race, and cheer on Marcus! We hope to see you there.

State Course 5K Map:

Cross Country Course Map (5K)

Marcus Cross Delivers Halloween Treats at Region Championship

Dateline October 31, 2014, Lubbock, Texas: In “spooktacular” fashion Marcus Cross _DSC7143treated its fans to a Happy Halloween by delivering two mid-afternoon medal winning race goodies at the UIL Region I Cross Country Championship held today at Mae Simmons Park in Lubbock, TX. On a crisp, clear, “mile high blue sky” kind of day, with light 10 mph winds, and a high temperature of just 64 degrees, the weather was perfect for runners to deliver great times, and on this Halloween MXC absolutely came through and delivered.

In the first ever 6-6A Region Championship, the Lady Marauders came through in flying Regional Varsity Women-16colors and outpaced the competition, finishing first with 42 points, placing its first five in the_DSC7044 top 18 runners, and outpacing 2nd place Hebron by 30 points (72), 3rd place Flower Mound (112), and 4th place Southlake Carroll (127). All four of these teams will travel to Round Rock, TX in the Austin area to run at the Texas State Championship next Saturday. And to show you just how competitive Marcus’ home District 6-6A is in girls’ cross-country, on the Region medal stand as the top three Region teams were the three LISD schools, Marcus, Hebron and Flower Mound, that had advanced out of District.

_DSC6741Pacing the Lady Marauders was Maddie Reed with a course record 16:51.18, and joining her on the top ten medal stand were Quinn Owen in 5th at 17:23.41 and Peyton Brown in 6th at 17:27.00. Rounding out the scoring were Emily Jeacock in 12th at 17:51.44 and Ashton Hutcherson in 18th at 18:14.41, and helping to put distance on the rest of the field were Emilia Ferreyra at 19:17.38 in 51st and Miranda Vassh at 19:36.45 in 62nd.

In the Boys’ 6A race, Marcus continued its upward trend by placing third, earning a spot on Regional Varsity Men-3the medal stand with 118 points, behind first place and TX state #1 ranked Southlake (78) and second place El Paso Eastwood (87), and just two points ahead of 4th place and _DSC7055highly ranked Keller Timber Creek with 120 points. A close study of the team scores reveals that there were a number of performances by the Marcus top five finishers that put the team on the road not just to State, but the Regional medal stand.

Continuing his strong comeback from an early season injury, Logan Hendrix paced MXC Regional Varsity Men-30with a 9th place finish and time of 15:14.81, earning him a spot on the top 10 individuals’ medal stand. Given the day’s events for the Hendrix family (our thoughts and prayers are with Logan’s dad Joe for a speedy and full recovery), one just cannot help but be amazed by Logan’s extraordinary performance. Strong finishes from Brady Steele, 14th, at 15:16.85, Luke Page, 27th, at 15:41.27, and two more MXC comeback kids, Cameron Blackmon, 28th, at 15:42.42, and Alec Blair, 42nd, at 15:58.17, saw MXC’s top five all finish the course in under 16 minutes. Rounding out the field with excellent times and helping distance the competition were Benson Merrill, 61st, at 16:14.73, and Parker Brady, 78th, at 16:33.88.


Thanks to their great regional performances, both MXC teams are headed back to the Texas State Cross Country Championship to be held next Saturday afternoon at Old Settlers Park in Round Rock, Texas. With races to the North of Austin at 12:30 PM and 1:00 PM, the site and timing make it possible for Marcus Cross fans to drive down 303Saturday morning in time to cheer on MXC. So, we hope to see you out there showing your Marcus Spirit. Both of these teams have worked very hard to earn their spots at State and are getting stronger every week.

NEXT UP: NOV 8 – Times Below – Texas State Cross Country Championship @ Lakeview Pavillion, Old Settlers Park, Round Rock, TX MAP: Street Address: Lakeview Pavillion, Old Settlers Park, off Harrell Parkway, Roundrock, TX 

  • Girls 6A Texas State Cross Country Championship 12:30 PM
  • Boys 6A Texas State Cross Country Championship 1:00 PM

Travel & Parking Tips for First Time Attendees: Coming down I-35 the day of the race shouldn’t be a problem if you are on the road around 7 AM or even a little later. Just remember I-35 has its construction spots and traffic thickens when you get to Round Rock, especially around the race site exit. Race parking for the Old Settlers Park course is at the Dell Diamond Stadium parking lot, so you should plan on it taking some time to get off the highway, through Round Rock traffic to the site, and parked in the lot. Plan accordingly, and understand that there are races every half hour starting at 9 AM, and once parked, you either need to hike about 3/4s of a mile to the race site or catch an event shuttle bus. But don’t let any of that deter you. With prior proper planning you can be there well ahead of the first 6A race to wish the teams good luck. Bring a chair, some water and maybe even a picnic lunch. It should be a great day to race, and cheer on Marcus!

Marcus Prevails at McKinney, Crowned Across-the-Board District 6-6A Champs

Dateline October 21, 2014, McKinney, Texas: At the District 6-6A Cross Country Championship held today at Myers Park in McKinney, the Marcus Marauder Cross Country teams faced a packed field of strong teams and deep competition. Thanks to UIL’s 2014 realignment, Marcus and its fellow LISD 6A high schools were moved from a six school district into a nine school district, making it all the more difficult this year to be one of the top three teams to advance from District to next week’s Regional. Increasing the degree of difficulty was the fact that LISD rivals Flower Mound and Hebron have had their boys and girls teams ranked in the Texas state CC coaches top 10 poll at various times throughout the season.

So the Marauders knew it would be no easy task to advance to the Regional, let alone earn blue ribbons or championship hardware at District. But, thanks to a great set of tune-up races a week and a half earlier, where Marcus swept the Birdville Flyin’ Hawks Invitational against excellent competition, Marcus entered the District Championship buoyed and optimistic.

And that optimism proved infectious for all Marauder teams as Marcus prevailed across District 2014 (668)the board, winning the Varsity Girls’ and Boys’, and JV Girls’ and Boys’, races, enjoying a rare feat, a District Championship sweep.

Both of the varsity races were predicted to be tight, as in “Wallace and Gromit, A Close Shave” tight, and could go any way, and in that regard these two races did not disappoint.

In the day’s first race, the Girls’ Varsity, the Lady Marauders proved victorious by two points in an extremely close race, 34-36. MXC placed its top five runners in the first 12 finishers _DSC5836and managed to overcome Hebron’s placement of its top five in the first 10, thanks to the fortuitous overall finishes of MXC’s runners (Marcus 2, 4, 5, 11 and 12 vs. Hebron 3, 6, 8, 9 and 10). The Lady Marauders and Lady Hebron Hawks will be joined in Lubbock next week at Regional by a fast rising Flower Mound Girls Varsity which finished third, placing its top five in the first 20 runners. (With UIL’s expansion from the top three, to the top four, teams advancing from the CC Regional to State, it’s quite possible that these teams just might be seeing a lot of each other over the next few weeks.)

While expectations have been high all season for the Lady Marauders, the MXC Boys’ _DSC6037have been more or less running under the radar, ranked behind other district teams in polls most of the season, due in part to various Marauders battling back from injuries suffered both this year and in prior years. However, the MXC Boys’ have been returning to form, growing stronger every week and showing signs they’re ready to run at an elite level and join the Lady Marauders. And the boys did just that, copying the Lady Marauders with a tight, mere two point win, 62-64, over the Hebron Hawks. Joining the Marauder and Hawks boys’ teams at Regional will be Plano West which took 3rd, just 15 points behind MXC, at 77.

To give Marauder fans a break from race anxiety the Girls JV dispatched its competition 2014-10-21 District Womens JV (3)with a solid 47 point victory, 18 to 65, with Lady Marauders placing 1st (freshman Emilia 311Ferreyra earning JV Girls’ District Champion honors), 2nd, 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th, and thereby dispensing with all race tension.

The JV Boys team achieved similar success, winning 19 to 58, finishing 1st (senior District 2014 (690)Benson Merrill taking the JV boys’ individual District Championship), 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th.

District 2014 (702)District 6-6A Results can be found at:

Perhaps even more worthy of note in connection with MXC JV teams’ success was the fact they had to deal with the days’ burgeoning heat, as race time temperatures soared from the first race at 830 AM in the mid-sixties to the last race at 1210 PM in the mid-eighties, as the races were spread out throughout the morning, staggered by an hour or more between races, due to the fact this year’s District Meet was a joint one held at the site with District 10-5A. This clearly disadvantaged those JV runners who were hoping to perform well and possibly extend their season by moving up to varsity if their times beat those of any varsity runners.

In the opinion of this writer (which is not a representation of any Marcus HS Official or member of its Cross Country Coaching Staff, or that of any Officer of the MXC Booster Club), the race organizers scheduling of a weekday event and use of a spread race format was a bit shortsighted, not just for the JV runners, but for all participating teams’ fans and especially parents of participants, many of whom had weekday workweek job responsibilities and therefore could not attend. One can not help but feel sorry for those parents and fans who may have missed the opportunity to see a senior runner run his or her last race of their HS CC career given event scheduling. And so one can only hope that next year’s District Meet race organizers will be more far-sighted and run a more fan and parent friendly race on a weekend date, or in the worst case scenario of another weekday event, at least run each participating District’s races on a consecutive back to back race schedule to minimize the time commitment of attending fans, parents and student-athletes. With this year’s Region 1 Meet in Lubbock also moving to a weekday, notwithstanding the fact that all other cross country races are held on Saturdays, one can only hope that we see a return next year to a weekend District Meet. One can only hope….

Having gotten the above “rant” out there, this writer at the same time also extends a hearty thank you to the McKinney schools’ District organizers and volunteers for the thankless job of putting on the all important District Championship Meet. Having guided team buses and parent and fan cars to parking spaces the prior four years at the risk of missing my own kids’ District races, this writer gives thanks to this year’s District 6-6A volunteers. We just hope that next year better scheduling will allow more parents and fans to attend and enjoy the Meet. 🙂

Closing on that positive note, we also note that the Marcus Marauders mustered a District 2014 Candids -SLV-9marvelous effort to achieve a magnificent team accomplishment of a District Championship sweep. Time now to hope that this week’s success will breed more 2014-10-21 District Champs (24)success next week, and the MXC Boys’ and Girls’ varsity teams will find a way to successfully run the Region I gauntlet by finishing as one of the top four teams this coming2014-10-21 District Champs (28) Halloween, Friday, October 31st, in Lubbock, and thus earn the “treat” to advance to Round Rock and a chance to compete for a Texas State Cross Country Championship.2014-10-21 District Champs (10)

2014-10-21 District Champs (1)a
: OCT 31 – Region I Championship. Place: Mae Simmons Park, Lubbock TX  MAP: Street Address: 1319 East 24th Street, Lubbock, Texas 79404 – Mae Simmons Park, MLK Blvd @ 24th St Lubbock TX. Race Times: 6A Girls Varsity Race 2:00 PM, 6A Boys Varsity Race at 2:30 PM, Award Ceremony Time: shortly after the 6A Boys’ Race.

Marcus Flocks Together and Soars at Birdville Flyin’ Hawks Invitational

Dateline October 11, 2014, Hurst, Texas: On a cool, overcast, wet (muddy) morning in Hurst at the Birdville Flyin’ Hawks Invitational held at Tarrant County College, all of the Flying Hawks 2014 VG (4)Marcus Marauders XC teams soared above the competition on this day, flocking together, like birds of a feather, with each team taking first for a Meet sweep.

Against a very strong Hebron Hawks Girls Varsity team (and fellow District 6-6A rival), the Lady Marauders eked out a close 10 point win, edging the Lady Hawks 41-51 in a race where Flying Hawks 2014 VG (80)both teams placed their top 5 runners in the top twenty against strong competition. The race sets up quite a showdown for the upcoming District 6-6A Championship when Marcus and Hebron are joined by a strong Flower Mound team and other strong individual and team district competitors.

Speaking of strong competition and a.close race, the Boys Varsity won a three-point Flying Hawks 2014 VB (18)squeaker over Canyon, 85-88, with the top five runners on each squad trading places and tightly aligned. This hopefully will be a big confidence booster for the Boys’ Varsity going into Championship Season, as the District 6-6A competition will be tough with this year’s expanded nine team District field that includes Flower Mound, Hebron and the Planos.

The Girls JV team placed first 22 points ahead of Southlake Carrol, with a 25-47 victory, Flying Hawks 2014  JVG (13)thanks to four Lady Marauders finishing in the top six, with MXC’s fifth place finisher coming in #12.

Dispatching the competition and dispensing with all race outcome mystery, the Boys’ JV Flying Hawks 2014 JVB (13)team rolled in the first five runners for a perfect 15 score, adding finishers 9 and 13 for good measure, resulting with an amazing 0:23 split between the top five Marauder runners who averaged race times of just 17:13.

For detailed results, see:

Overall, the Meet sweep was a wonderful confidence builder and tune-up for the upcoming District 6-6A Championship to be held Tuesday, October 21st at McKinney’s Myers Park. Races are spread out because the site is simultaneously hosting the District 10-5A Meet. District 6-6A and Marauder race times are as follows:

  • 8:30 Varsity Girls
  • 9:50 Varsity Boys
  • 10:50 Girls JV
  • 12:10 Boys JV

We hope to see you out there to cheer on all racing Marauders. Be smart and pack a chair, and a breakfast and a lunch!!!