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Sunday, April 14, 2024

Tigers Take Greenwood As Wood Sisters Shine


Darby Jones, Jadelynn Wood, Laney Wood, and Hope Rainwater are among medal winners at Greenwood’s “Thrill on the Hill”. Jadelynn Wood was the small school individual champion.

They call it the “Thrill of the Hill”. As one of the toughest cross country courses because of its uphill terrain, Greenwood’s Bell Park was more fiend than friend. But, Mansfield’s Lady Tigers found success in a big way as the winners of the small school division on October 8.

Mansfield sophomore Jadelyn Wood did her part and then some. The up and coming long-distance racer won the small school 5K with a grueling 26:03.90 finish time.

Katlynn Moore makes a move on the hilly terrain of Bell Park

“Jadelynn has been producing stronger and stronger results,” expressed Mansfield coach John Mackey. “She’s learning more about herself each week. She’s recognizing what it takes to be a champion. You could see this coming.”

With Wood’s first-place time leading the way, Mansfield followed with four more top 15 finishers. Crossing in semi-sequential order Darby Jones (4), Katlynn Moore (5), Hope Rainwater (10), and Alyssa James (13) compiled the group’s 27 point team score.

Mansfield took the senior girls 1A-3A title over former conference rival Greenland by one point. Other schools in the small school section were Heavener, Scranton, and Western Yell County.

Lady Tiger Darby Jones closes in on a Bentonville runner

Wood was a popular last name for a Lady Tiger runner near the lead at Greenwood. Jadelynn’s younger eighth-grade sister, Laney, was near the top of the small school racers in the junior high contest.

Laney Wood finished third (15:30.90) in the shorter 2-mile race. She may have performed as well as she did, winning the Buck Fever Invitational a week earlier, had officials not lumped class 4A schools with the 1A-3A group for the junior high standings. Instead, the younger Wood settled for third behind West Fork’s Makenzie Greenlee and Clarksville’s Macy Weathers.

“We’re looking forward to the day these two sisters can be on the same team again”, spoke the coach. “They ran together in junior high last season. It was a lot of fun with those two and Trinity (Triska) always battling for the lead.”

Mansfield’s Jadelynn Wood (right) pushes up the hill at Greenwood

Mansfield’s Trinity Triska was fourth in the junior high girl’s event. She was clocked at 17:14.10 along the elevated landscape. 

Wood, Triska, and fellow eighth-grader Aidan Fildes all received medals for their efforts at the Greenwood thriller. 

Fildes was elated with her first medal of the season. She was 13th place among a very strong field of small division runners hailing from places like West Fork, Pea Ridge, Heavener, Greenland, Clarksville, and Western Yell County.

Mansfield’s younger team finished third overall. This was the fourth time this season the group finished with the bronze prize.

Mansfield junior girls Laney Wood, Addie Bowman, Rileigh Parker, Trinity Triska, Summer Frazier, and Aidan Fildes await the “Thrill on the Hill”

The MJH team completed their top five scorings with Addie Bowman at 33rd place and newcomer Rileigh Parker at 39th place. The Tiger team total was 88 points. West Fork won the junior girls’ heat with 43 points while Pea Ridge took second place at 59 points.

Mansfield’s junior boys and senior boys were ineligible for team honors as their rosters were below the five-member minimum. Rylan Nichols was the top junior Tiger at 27th place. He was followed by Joseph Carter at 28th.  

Ethan Streets started the men’s race. Faith Rainwater started the women’s race. Each was pulled out of the competition before completing the course as a precautionary reason based upon the coach’s decision. 

Rainwater was in the lead for small school competitors and among the top overall runners when a medical issue forced the decision.

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