Meet Preview: 2022 South Pontotoc XC Invitational

High School Girls Preview

*Hannah Sanders (347) and Anna Caroline Crouch (712) at the 2022 Tupelo XC Invitational

Photo credits: Drew Lewis

This will be another exciting battle between Anna Caroline Crouch and Hannah Sanders. The Saltillo-Mooreville rivals have gone at it every race of the season and will have another opportunity to push each other this week.

Crouch placed third this previous weekend at the 2022 Tupelo Invitational. This was an impressive finish at a stacked race. Just a second behind her was Sanders.

On the season, Crouch currently is 3-2 against Sanders. After last week's extremely close finish, nothing is off the table. It is a safe bet that it will be an entertaining, to-the-wire race.

A new factor is being added this weekend to mix up the Crouch-Sanders rivalry. That is small school star, Eliza McCarley.

*Eliza McCarley at the 2022 Tupelo XC Invitational, where she ultimately got the win

Photo credits: Drew Lewis

Only an eighth grader, McCarley has some eye-catching stats. Placing in the top three of every race in 2022, she knows how to compete. She is also the reigning MHSAA 2A Cross Country Champion, where she won with a time of 20:00. 

This season McCarley has run fast times and will be pushed even more by the older, big school competition.

It will surely be exciting to see how McCarley fares against Crouch and Sanders.

Fighting to fill out the top five is likely to be some mix of Eva Null, Landyn Rose McMillan, Macy Bain, and Emma Ruffin.

State Editor's Pick: We love to see the Crouch v. Sanders matchup that we have already seen so much this season. 

Crouch has created a lot of momentum recently at both the 2022 Saltillo Cross Country Invitational and Tupelo Invitational, finishing higher and higher up against the best of Northern Mississippi. 

Sanders did get the jump on her at her home meet at the beginning of the season and is definitely no slouch, but we think the snowball effect will come into play, and Crouch will ride off of the momentous performances she has created this season.