Moody takes third in state

Anderson County High School junior Maddy Moody took third place in the Tennessee 3A Cross Country Championship in Nashville last Saturday.

Moody, who advanced to the state meet by finishing as runner up in the region, moved into third place in the final 100 meters of the race. She ran in fourth or fifth position for much of the race.

In the final 100 meters she passed Shila Kapaya of Knoxville Catholic, the runner who bested her at the region meet two weeks ago.

Moody finished 16th in the state last year, just missing out on making it to the podium. Only the top 15 finishers make it to the podium.

“She brought that up and got emotional talking about how hard finishing 16th was and I didn’t realize it had motivated her that much,” said Derek Wallace, head coach of the cross country team at ACHS.

“It was amazing. Shila [Kapaya] pretty much led the whole race and kind of set the tone for how it was going to be ran and Maddy caught her probably 20 yards from the finish line. That’s the second time that happened this year. Maddy also beat her in Bristol and the same kind of thing happened. Shila set the pace and ran out of gas at the end where Maddy just got stronger,” he said.

Wallace said that just before the race, Moody took her watch off and handed it to her mom.

“We were all like, ‘What are you doing?’ She was like, ‘I don’t need it today. I’m just racing my race.’ She wanted to be on the heels of that second group and we had kind of outlined four girls she needed to stay with and sure enough she was right with them the whole way. Coming off of that last hill she just turned it on and it was a sight to see, such sheer determination,” he said.

Wallace noted that Moody has her work cut out for her if she wants to continue to improve. State champion Sasha Neglia of Dobyns Bennett is just a sophomore and second place finisher Landri Wilcox of Cookeville is just a freshman.

Moody’s efforts are drawing the interest of many schools including such Division I schools as Georgia Tech, Purdue, Alabama, and George Washington.

He said Moody, along with ACHS teammates Mollie Longmire, Kirby Logan, Micah Sawyer, and Colin Moody will be racing at the Footlocker Southern Regionals in Charlotte, N.C. on Nov. 25.

“If she does well there her stock will not just rise it will soar,” Wallace said.

Top 10 Tennessee 3A Large School Cross Country Championship

1. Sasha Neglia (soph.) Dobyns Bennett 18:15.71

2. Landri Wilcox (fresh.) Cookeville 18:34.93

3. Maddy Moody (jr.) Anderson County 18:51.53

4. Camille Smith (sr.) Central Magnet 18:58.22

5. Anna Delahunt (sr.) Farragut 18:59.00

6. Shila Kapaya (sr.) Knoxville Catholic 19:00.80

7. Breanna Roy (sr.) David Crockett 19:11.24

8. Annika Sleenhof (sr.) Ravenwood 19:18.84

9. Lydia Tankersley (fresh.) Houston 19:25.41

10. GiGi Maddox (sr.) Fred J. Page 19:27.46

11. Lesley Green (jr.) Rhea Co. 19:31.92

12. Rachel Strayer (sr.) Siegel 19:32.98

13. Jamie Blaylock (sr.) Ravenwood 19:35.31

14. Marilyn McCarthy (fresh.) Siegel 19:37.29

15. Alex Rosen (jr.) Ravenwood 19:39.37