(Photos By Kim Rutkowski)
Charles Hicks said in a pre-race interview at Nike Cross Nationals that he just wanted to be competitive and hang with the best runners in the country. That is exactly what the Bolles junior did Saturday at the Glendoveer Golf Course in Portland, Oregon. Hicks was in 11th or 12th through one mile, 10th at two miles with a time of 9:53.4, and cracked the top ten crossing the finish in 15:27.14 and 9th place.
Hick's performances was the fastest by any individual on a qualifying team and earned him second team All-American honors. He also becomes the highest placing Floridian male or female as the only one to crack the top ten. Armando (AJ) DelValle was 14th in 2011. Hicks time was also the best ever by a Floridian surpassing DelValle's 15:34.30 by over seven seconds.
Overall, the team finished 20th out of 22 teams. No Florida teams have ever finished higher. Winter Park in 2004 and Belen Jesuit in 2011 were 20th as well, while Columbus and Trinity Prep were 22nd in 2009 and 2015 respectively. The Episcopal girls did place 14th in 2005.
Congratulations and thanks for making us proud!