The 2016 season was a record-setting one for the Falcons, with the boys and girls teams both capturing district championships for the first time in school history. That was followed by more success as the boys ran to a second-place finish at regionals and the girls took sixth, qualifying both teams for the state meet.
For the boys, who entered the season with high expectations, it was the best regional finish in program history and their third straight trip to the FHSAA state championships in Tallahassee, where they ultimately placed 17th. The girls proved to be a pleasant surprise, exceeding the expectations of many to finish 19th at the state meet. It was their first trip since 2013.
Despite some key losses, both teams look to be poised to challenge for district crowns again in 2017. The Falcons will have huge shoes to fill with the departure of senior Andrew Csubak. After placing 15th in the 2015 district meet as a junior, he won the 2016 title and also recorded the fastest time at the Venice Invitational during the regular season to become the Falcons’ first two-event champion in a single season. The torch passes to a pair of experienced seniors in Henry Howell and Hayes Chatham. Howell was second at districts and the top individual finisher for SSES at regionals, while Chatham was one of four Falcons to place in the top 10 at districts.
On the girls’ side, the Falcons should continue to be formidable. SSES returns four top performers in seniors Baylee Barker and Katie Pierce, freshman Alysia Serterides, and eighth grader Maddie Popp. Barker, Pierce and Popp all finished among the top 10 at districts, and Serterides was the top runner for the Falcons at regionals.
Cross Country is FHSAA sanctioned and is a fall season sport.