Demons qualify for state – all of them

DHS boys win a 4A regional title, and a Maloney wins with a record

The Durango High School cross country runners – all of them – are going to state.

The Demons won a regional team title, a regional individual title and broke a school record Wednesday at the CHSAA Class 4A Cross Country Regional Championships in Delta. And both the DHS boys and girls teams earned trips to next week’s CHSAA State Championships in Colorado Springs.

Durango sophomore Shannon Maloney, breaking away late from a close race, won the girls 5-kilometer race at Delta’s Confluence Park in a school record time of 18 minutes, 20 seconds.

Maloney, who broke the previous DHS mark set by University of Colorado All-American alumna Laura Thweatt, helped the DHS girls finish second to Battle Mountain (Vail) in team points.

Brother Joe Maloney, a senior, nearly broke the DHS boys school record in finishing second Wednesday.

Liam Meiro of Summit High School (Breckenridge) won the race in 16:06. Joe Maloney was second in 16:20, although timing problems were reported from the Class 4A races in Delta on Wednesday.

With a strong pack finish, the DHS boys came across 8-9-10-11 to take the regional championship from runner-up Eagle Valley.

“I’m just ecstatic,” Durango head coach David McMillan said after the DHS boys won the regional crown.

“Sean McLaughlin ... he bolted up to be our No. 2 runner,” McMillan said after he came across in eighth place in 16:54.

Teammate Gordon Gianniny, a freshman, was ninth in 16:57. Teammate Nicholas Turco, also a freshman, was 10th in 16:59.83. Alastair McMillan was a very close 11th in 16:59.84.

“That’s a coach’s dream ... to have those four within 5 seconds of each other,” McMillan said.

Collin Francom was 19th for DHS. Trent Andrews finished 21st and Ben Lachelt 22nd.

Coach McMillan said Shannon Maloney ran a “picture-perfect race” to win the girls race on the 3.1-mile course.

“She ran beautifully,” he said.

Hannah Peterson was the DHS runner-up. She was 13th in 19:52. Sarah Bates was 16th in 20:02. Carly Pierson finished 20th.

“Carly ran a phenomenal race. That was a lifetime (personal record) for her,” McMillan said.

Emily Schaldach stepped up as the No. 5 DHS runner. She was 24th in 20:34.

“We’re all very excited (about state),” McMillan said.

The state meet will be held at the Norris Penrose Event Center on Oct. 27 in Colorado Springs.

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