Pieterse wins Lower State; Panthers take fourth place

Carolina Forest sophomore Lisa Pieterse turned in a career-best time of 17:57 to win Monday’s Class 4A Lower State Cross Country Championships going away at Old Santee Canal State Park.

In the boys event, Carolina Forest’s Dustin Conklin and Jesse Patrick posted sub-16 minute times to lead the Panthers to a fourth-place finish, good enough to qualify for Saturday’s Class 4A state championship in Columbia.

Conklin (15:38) finished third and Patrick (15:49) placed sixth to give the Panthers a pair of top-10 finishers. Robert Reardon (16:14) placed 18th, Charles Daniele (16:50) was 34th and seventh-grader Michael Pieterse (17:15) was 42nd to round out the Panthers’ scoring with 103 points, tying Ashley Ridge for fourth. Carolina Forest won the tiebreaker by sixth runner Stephen Ciaramitaro’s (17:16) 43rd-place finish.

The Lady Panthers finished sixth, failing to qualify for next week’s state meet by one position, but Lisa Pieterse advanced as an individual based on her winning time. Damielle Schroeder (19:46) was 22nd, Tracey Scalzott (20:29) was 36th and Ashley Cole (21:46) finished 52nd to give Carolina Forest 166 points, 50 behind fifth-place qualifier Ashley Ridge.

Summerville (57) won the girls title, with Wando (66), Stratford (92), Bluffton (98) and Ashley Ridge (116) rounding out the top five. Bluffton (71) won the boys title, followed by Wando (76) and Stratford (90) joining Carolina Forest and Ashley Ridge in the top five to qualify for Saturday’s state meet at the Sandhills course.

Photo by Joel Beachum

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