Meet Preview: 2022 Saltillo XC Invitational (Large School)

High School Boys Individual Preview

2021 Champion: Grayson Childress (Brookhaven High School) | 16:08

Course Record: Landen McNair (Bartlett High School) | 15:14

No. 1 seed: Parker Shannon (Saltillo High School) | 16:03

The Rundown:

The 2022 Saltillo XC Invitational High School Boys race is shaping to be one of the hottest races this season.

An athlete having a sensational season thus far is Saltillo High School's Parker Shannon. He ran at the fast Mooreville course, finishing just behind All-MileSplit Mississippi XC No. 6 Chandler Ray.

RESULTS: 2022 Mooreville XC Invitational - Varsity Boys 5K

With the 2022 Saltillo XC Invitational being his home course, it will be interesting to see how it plays into his favor.

Another big-time name to look out for is Oak Grove's Bennett Ferguson. He has gone 16:09 for the 5k this season from his win at The Opener, moving him up the All-Milesplit XC rankings No. 4 position.

RESULTS: The Opener - Varsity Boys 5K

Alongside Ferguson is his teammate Gavin WheatHe is coming off a win at the 2022 Forerunner XC Challenge and is proving himself even more dangerous on the grass.

RESULTS: Forerunner XC Challenge - Yellow Boys 5K

State Editor's pick: Although Owens and Brannon could potentially shake things up, this race essentially boils down to Shannon v. Wheat v. Ferguson, which is an exciting matchup, to say the least. 

This pick may be the most challenging pick of the year - Shannon has been on fire this year and is racing on his home course, but a duo like Ferguson and Wheat is hard to beat. 

Ferguson is debatably the best second-half racer in the state. As aerobically efficient as he is, the windy turns of the Saltillo course will serve him well. 

Parker Shannon almost caught Ray at the 2022 Mooreville XC Invitational. Still, we can guarantee that Ferguson will put in multiple surges by the time it gets to 600m left in the race. 

With all of that being said, we're going with Ferguson... However, if Shannon is in it with less than 600m to go, we'll say Shannon for the win with the advantage of the crowd bringing him home.