Danville’s Smith ranked first entering state cross country meet

When Meagan Smith ran her first cross country race a couple of months ago, you would have been hard-pressed to find 10 other runners who even knew her name. But they know her now.

Most of the girls she competes against have been chasing her all season, and they’ll try to catch her once more Saturday when she races for a championship at the state cross country meet.

The Danville junior is no lock, but she is ranked first among Class A girls entering the meet at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington. She is bidding to become the area’s first cross country champion since Danville’s Kaitlin Snapp won three straight titles from 2006-08.

Smith has been ranked No. 1 or 2 in her class for much of the season. She defeated Maddox Patterson of Sayre, the three-time defending Class A girls champion, at their regional race last week. Patterson will be a factor Saturday, however, as will Karly Gawarecki of Louisville Holy Cross.

Smith’s race is at 9:30 a.m., the first of six races that will include runners from most area schools.

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