Hammond School’s SCISA Class 3A cross country reign came to and end Saturday at Heathwood Hall. The Skyhawks, who had won four in a row and nine of the last 11 titles on the independent school scene, had to settle for third place behind St. Joseph’s and Hilton Head Prep.
The Knights, who finished second behind Hammond in 2006 and 2007, claimed their first title with an impressive score of 22 points. HHP closed with 56 points, nine points less than Hammond. The Skyhawks final team score of 67 points was only four points higher than last year’s title-winning run, but paled in comparison to the outstanding performance by highly motivated St. Joseph’s.
Catherine Herring, an eighth-grader, and senior Mason Castles both cracked the Top 10 individually. Herring was sixth with a time of 20 minutes, 26.71 seconds, while Castles was 10th in 21:07.19. Seventh-grader Copeland Hanshaw (15th, 21:23.19), sophomore Sarah Dobbs (17th, 21:31.13) and senior Margaret Deans Fawcett (19th, 21:38.11) took care of the rest of the scoring.
Castles finally earned Top 10 billing in her final prep run, but she has been a consistent performer through the years while helping the Skyhawks earn four championships. Castles was 13th at the finals last year, 14th in 2006, 27th in 2005 and 31st in 2004 as an eighth-grader.