LECANTO — The Lecanto High School football complex and surrounding area terrain was the sight for the Lecanto Invitational cross country meet on Saturday morning.

This was the third race of the cross country season, 3.1-miles that were a major tune-up for varsity and junior varsity girls and boys, aiming toward qualifying for the state meet in November in Tallahassee.

The Citrus boys had the highest placing among county teams, finishing seventh (268) out of 27 schools that accumulated a team score. Lecanto came in 15th (446). Neither Crystal River nor Seven Rivers Christian had enough runners for a team total.

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Lecanto senior Brandon Rydzewski had the best individual showing for the county boys, placing 14th in a time of 17:16.54.

"If you can run a fast pace on this course, you’ll run even faster at the next race," Rydzewski said. "I’m working on my consistency. Working on a sub 17."

Thomas Tyler of Citrus placed 16th, the senior running a 17:19.72. Miles Tobin of Seven Rivers was 34th (18:20.02).

In the girls race, Citrus was 10th overall (307) and Lecanto was 13th (348).

Catalina Veldwijk, a sophomore for the Panthers, came in 13th with a 20:59.47, and Citrus senior Mackenzie Scordato was right behind in 12th (21:08.24).

"I just wanted to have fun and work on controlling my anxiety," Veldwijk said. "It’s great running here. It’s a true cross country course."

As with the boys, Crystal River and Seven Rivers did not have enough runners for a team score on the girls side.

"My time was 26-plus, but it’s my first race ever, and I’ll get better," Seven Rivers runner Graceann Schlisner said. "I’m happy I finished."

Staff writer Chris Bernhardt Jr. contributed to this report.

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