Lady Cyclones third, Cyclones sixth; first year for Don Carnahan Fun Run
Michael Christopher
Assistant Sports Editor

The 33rd annual Cyclone Invitational was a good one for Russellville Junior High School’s cross country teams, which won their respective divisions Saturday at Old Post Park. Russellville High School’s Lady Cyclones came in third in the senior high girls division. Russellville’s boys finished sixth.
The meet hosted more than 800 runners Saturday. RHS coach Jerry Thompson said everything went well, and despite a very young team - with no seniors or ninth-grade girls competing - every year they host their cross country meet is very important to Russellville.
“I think our teams improved on perseverance and determination considering the heat conditions,” Thompson said. “The senior high wanted to do real well, because they’re the kind of outgoing runners and are kind of setting the tone for our junior high teams.”
Thompson said the Lady Whirlwinds and Whirlwinds ran a strong race, and he felt practicing on the course was very beneficial to all the teams, especially RJHS.
“They had a really good day,” he said. “They made some distinct moves in the race in order to pass people and beat people, which is how they’re coached to run, and it really paid off.”
Thompson said the Cyclones and Lady Cyclones have been battling injuries and illlness, but thought they ran well within their capabilities.
“For the senior high, this meet says we’ve got to get well and get a little bit better before the conference and state meets,” he said. “We’ve got to continue to train hard and practice every day.”
The Cyclone Invitational also included the Don Carnahan Fun run for the first year. Thompson said the run was open to RHS alumni and former runners. Carnahan coached cross country and track and field at Russellville for many years before retiring last spring.
Russellville will travel to Lake Hamilton on Thursday for the Hot Springs Invitational. Thompson said overall, Saturday’s meet was a success.
“The booster club parents and our coaching staff did a fabulous job,” Thompson said. “I got a lot of compliments on how well the meet was ran.”
Check Tuesday’s edition of The Courier for full results from the Cyclone Invitational.