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Grady, Thomas take top spots at New/Rock

in the lead is the winner Newton HS senior Alex Grady and right behind him is Salem HS Gabe Alvarez. 1st and 2nd place winners

in the lead is the winner Newton HS senior Alex Grady and right behind him is Salem HS Gabe Alvarez. 1st and 2nd place winners

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l-r Newton Christian Scott and Tyree Newton yards from the finish line.

COVINGTON -- Newton's Alex Grady and Rockdale's Antwonette Thomas took the top spots in the boys and girls races, but it was Heritage that was the overall champion at the New/Rock Cross Country meet on Thursday at Newton.

Grady set a new personal best, winning the boys meet with a time of 16 minutes, 39 seconds, 21 seconds faster than second-place Gabe Alvarez of Salem. The win gives Grady three wins for the season.

"I wasn't worried about time, I was worried about the team trying to win New/Rock. I was focused on placing well, but running well just goes with it," Grady said. "I try to win as many as possible. It's really a big boost.

In the girls meet, Thomas had no problem as she led from the start and was never really challenged, beating second-place Rhodelle Lewis of Eastside by more than two minutes. Thomas crossed the line at 21:33 with Lewis finishing at 23:39.

The rest of the top-10 finishers for the boys were Rockdale's Patrick Massie (17:32) and Tyree Newton (18:02), Newton's Christian Scott (18:02), Sean McDuffie (18:06), Shemar Rannie (18:17) and Kemeron Wallace (18:17), Rockdale's Clifton Casurra (18:23) and Heritage's Malik McCrary (18:39).

Following Thomas and Lewis for the girls top-10 were Alcovy's Elizabeth Smith (23:48), Heritage's Emily Taylor (24:02), Salem's Jordan Marshall (24:09) and Daria Woods (24:45), Eastside's Ally Chandler (24:49), Heritage's Ferree Buck (24:58), Newton's Maiya Newton and Eastside's Danysha Lamadieu (25:05).

Newton won the boys meet with 27 points while Heritage took the girls meet scoring 47 points as well as the overall combined championship with 109 team points, 19 points ahead of second place Newton.

Coming behind Newton in team score were Rockdale (48), Heritage (62), Eastside (117), Salem (136) and Alcovy (170).

Finishing behind the Heritage girls were Salem (55), Eastside (62), Rockdale (89), Newton (106) and Alcovy (DNS).