SEELEYVILLE -- Carmel swept the boys and girls team titles in Terre Haute but Mishawaka's Anna Rohrer was the talk of the day setting a girls state finals record while Barr-Reeve's Connor Sorrells took the boys crown.
Rohrer, just a sophomore and making her first appearance in the state finals, battled defending state champion Ashley Erba throughout but then pulled away from the Warsaw senior down the final straightaway. She crossed the line in 17:13.2 destroying the state finals record set by Erba last year in 18:05.6. Erba finished as the runner-up in 17:29.2.
West Lafayette's Bobbie Burgess finished third in 17:51.6, Columbus North's Mackenzie Caldwell was fourth in 17:55.8 and Eastern's (Greentown) Bethany Neeley came home in fifth in 18:04.2.
In the boys race, Zach Panning of Fort Wayne Concordia moved out to a sizeable lead through the first 3,000 meters but Barr-Reeve's Connor Sorrells caught him and pulled away late to win in 15:21.3. The Barr-Reeve senior became the first runner from his school to win a cross country state title.
Panning finished as the runner-up in 15:26.5, Troy Reeder of Hamilton Southeastern was third in 15:28.8, Jackson Bertoli of Terre Haute South was fourth in 15:34.2 and Kyle Eller of Lowell ended fifth in 15:35.2.
In the team competition, Carmel swept both boys and girls crowns.
It was the third consecutive state championship for the girls team coached by Mark Ellington. Gina Genco led a trio of Greyhounds in the top 10 overall finishing sixth overall in 18:31.3. Kelcy Welch was ninth in 18:38.8 and Haley Harris was 10th in 18:45.5.
The boys team, coached by Erhard Bell, captured the crown for the first time since 2008 ending Columbus North's run of three straight years. Three Greyhounds finished 15-16-17 oveall to lead the way including Bobby Browning in 15:55.2, Charlie Watson in 15:56.9 and Ben Veatch in 15:58.2, respectively.
Following the races, Warsaw's Ashley Erba and Carmel's Charlie Watson were announced as the winners of the respective mental attitude awards by the IHSAA Executive Committee.
The Committee annually presents the awards to the seniors they determined best demonstrated mental attitude, scholarship, leadership and athletic ability.
Ashley is the daughter of Scott and Karen Erba of Winona Lake and Charlie is the son of Andrew and Gretchen Watson of Carmel.
Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance, the proud corporate partner of the IHSAA, presented both individuals' school with a $1,000 scholarship in the name of the recipients.
IHSAA State Cross Country Finals
Boys team results: Carmel 93, Fort Wayne Carroll 116, Valparaiso 149, Warsaw 157, Hamilton Southeastern 182, Columbus North 187, Westfield 198, Terre Haute South 210, Indianapolis Cathedral 223, Lawrence Central 295, Northridge 333, Bloomington South 353, Franklin Central 391, Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger 405, Goshen 411, Lowell 427, West Lafayette 430, Mishawaka 443, Hobart 456, Bedford North Lawrence 465, McCutcheon 487, Homestead 502, Evansville North 524, Bloomington North 565
1. Connor Sorrells (BR) 15:21, 2. Zachery Panning (FWC) 15:26, 3. Troy Reeder (Ham SE) 15:28, 4. Jackson Bertoli (THS) 15:34, 5. Kyle Eller (Lowell) 15:35, 6. Jacob Poyner (Warsaw) 15:37, 7. Matt Dorsey (Law Cen) 15:39, 8. Ellis Coon (Warsaw) 15:41, 9. Kyle DuVall (West) 15:41.8, 10. James Huffman (NCent -- Indy) 15:42
Girls team results: Carmel 66, West Lafayette 147, Columbus North 158, Franklin Central 160, Hamilton Southeastern 173, Carroll Fort Wayne 174, Eastern (Greentown) 206, Northridge 228, Fishers 300, Westfield 320, Avon 337, Terre Haute North 359, Bloomington South 388, Fort Wayne Concordia 390, Valparaiso 405, Chesterton 407, Homestead 408, Penn 413, Warsaw Community 420, Huntington North 422, Portage 455, Terre Haute South 542, Bloomington North 639, Evansville Reitz Memorial 691
* - State Finals record
1. Anna Rohrer (Mish) 17:13*, 2. Ashley Erba (Warsaw) 17:29, 3. Bobbie Burgess (WLaf) 17:51, 4. Mackenzie Caldwell (Col North) 17:55, 5. Bethany Neeley (Eastern) 18:04, 6. Anna Aldrich (Fremont) 18:11, 7. Sarah Billingsley (Old. Academy) 18:21, 8. Kendra Foley (Nobles) 18:25, 9. Abigail Hostetler (Fremont) 18:29, 10. Rachel Nichwitz (Ham SE) 18:29