(06/17/2008)
By Gaylen Duskey

Never mind that Roane High School cross country standout Randy Price ran away from Brian Taylor to beat the 37-year-old in Saturday's Appalachian Runner's Classic.

Never mind that Price 48-second victory was the second biggest margin of victory in the Calhoun Cup Series. Never mind that Price ran a tremendous race.

No, all of that is overshadowed by the fact that Taylor ran the race while suffering from unpassed kidney stones.

"I thought I was going to die," Taylor said after finally being able to get his breath following the run. "I didn't know if I was going to be able to compete at all. But I had to."

By toughing it out Taylor solidified his hold on first place in the men's running division of the series.

He now has a total of seven points on three seconds and a first and a solid lead over Ravenswood's Duane "The Diesel" Haughey, who has 17 points. Price is third with 19 points despite missing two races.

Price covered the 3-2 mile course in 21.03 while Taylor was second at 21:51. Kyle Crihfield, also a cross country runner at Roane County, was third at 23:08 and Haughey was fourth at 31:56. Tommy Nichols of Cairo took fifth at 33:41, followed by Keith Smith at 37:45 and Calhoun Middle School runner David Overbay at 41:26.

The head-to-head men's walking competition remained tight despite another win by Scott Depot's Mark Rooper. Rooper traversed the course in 34:04 to add to his lead over William Cunningham of Mineral Wells. Cunningham finished second with a time of 37:13 and now trails Rooper by four points - 8-4 - after the first four races.

On the women's walking side Marty Owings of Pennsboro continued her perfection with her fourth first in four outings for a perfect total of four.

Melinda Fitzwater won her second race of the year for a four-race total of six and is tied with Calhoun High School cross country standout Anna Sampson for the overall lead among women runners.

Sampson missed Saturday's race while taking the ACT test at Roane County High School.

The Calhoun Cup goes into a hiatus of sorts and will resume August 23, 2008, with the Hotter Than Heck Run at Calhoun County Park starting at 9 a.m.

The race was originally scheduled for August 16, but the date was changed because of a conflict with the Parkersburg News and Sentinel Mini Marathon in Parkersburg.

It was also moved back so that area high school and middle school cross country runners could use it as a barometer of where they stand since the prep season gets under way the following Saturday.


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