Tuba City takes strong strides at Northern Arizona Middle School Cross Country Championships

Varsity boys and JV girls place first, Jaiden Melendez takes individual first

Runners line up at the start of the JV girls race at Buffalo Park Oct. 20. Submitted photo

Runners line up at the start of the JV girls race at Buffalo Park Oct. 20. Submitted photo

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - The day started out cold and chilly at Buffalo Park, Oct. 20, at the Northern Arizona Middle School Cross Country Championships. Several teams participated, traveling from as far as Blue Ridge and Many Farms. Team standouts for the event were Northland Prep Academy and the Tuba City Boarding School (TCBS).

Northland Prep took home first place trophies for the varsity girls and JV boys teams. Tuba City Boarding School varsity boys and JV girls took first place. With averaging first place scores of 48-50 between the two, TCBS's JV girls had an amazing score of 20, with the second place team, Hopi Day School, totaling 51. It was obvious that the JV girls had taken first with their fifth runner coming in twelfth place overall.

Tuba's Jaiden Melendrez put together a strong finish in the boys' varsity race, taking the lead with a gap allowing him to come in 38 seconds before the second place finisher. After running his race he was all smiles and continued to cheer on his team.

Tuba City Boarding School's cross country team continues to place in the top tier, but it appears that Northland Prep may be their rising challengers. The annual T-Bird Classic (which was a record breaking event with an estimated 500 runners) proved to be the beginning of the battle between these two schools.

One event remains on this year's schedule, the Junior High State Championships held at Estrella Park in Goodyear, Ariz.

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