For many cross country runners, reaching an elite level takes time and lots of patience.
Jack Vincent has competed in the sport for only a season, but that didn’t stop him from being considered one of the best in the state.
Now he is officially the best in the Tulsa area.
Vincent was named the OKPrepsExtra.com Boys Cross Country Athlete of the Year during All-World Awards banquet hosted by the Tulsa World at Marriott Southern Hills ballroom on Saturday.
Vincent recorded four wins last fall — Holland Hall, Claremore, Metro Lakes Conference and the Class 5A East Regional.
His fastest time in the 5K (3.1 miles) came at the Zebras’ home meet on Sep. 28, when he clocked in at 16 minutes, 2 seconds, breaking his own school record of 16:34 that he set a week earlier.
Vincent ran a 16:47 to win the Metro Lakes Conference title, and he claimed regional supremacy in 16:44.
Vincent placed fourth at the Class 5A state meet with a time of 16:44. Santa Fe South’s Christian Arenivar won the race in 16:24.
His 16:44 was the second fastest state meet time of any Tulsa area runner regardless of class, behind only Trevor Pendergraft of Owasso, who ran a 16:42 to finish fifth in Class 6A.
Vincent returns for his senior season later this fall.