Prep weekend: Episcopal cross country meet set for Saturday

A little over a decade ago Episcopal made the decision to move its annual Round Table Run from the school’s grounds to Highland Road Park.

The meet is expected to soar to new heights this Saturday with 1,496 runners entered. Many of the top Baton Rouge, New Orleans and Acadiana area teams are expected to compete in the 35th RTR. Fifty-five schools are entered. Races begin at 8 a.m. with a one-mile fun run open to the public.

Meanwhile, Episcopal’s other annual fall staple, the 35th Episcopal Invitational volleyball tournament begins at 5 p.m. Friday with pool play. Two other volleyball tournaments, the 35th Brusly Invitational and Dutchtown Tournament, both began earlier in the week. After taking Friday off, the two tourneys will conclude Saturday.

The schedule also includes two Capital City Swim League meets Saturday at the Crawfish Aquatics pool.

Cross country

The one notable team missing from the RTR mix is St. Paul’s, which claimed the boys team title at last weekend’s Bayou Boogie Classic at Highland.

“This is the biggest one we’ve ever had, probably by a couple of hundred runners,” Episcopal boys coach Claney Duplechin said. “I think the sport is growing. I also think Highland has a lot to do with it. People like to run the course.

“We won’t have St. Paul’s this week, but I think its a really good group. You add Jesuit and Brother Martin for the boys. The girls competition should really be something, too.”

The three-mile girls varsity race is at 8:20 a.m., followed by the three-mile boys varsity race at 9 a.m. The two junior high races — girls (9:30 a.m.) and boys (10 a.m.) — are next.

Covington-based St. Paul’s (boys) and Dominican (girls) were the champions a year ago. St. Joseph’s Academy won the girls title ahead of Alexandria-based Menard a week ago; Catholic and Episcopal were second and third in the boys division.

SJA’s Annie Hill won the girls race a week ago. Dominican’s Mia Meydrich, St. Thomas More’s Hannah Bourque and Catholic-PC’s Addie Burleigh join the mix this week.

Volleyball

The Episcopal Invitational features nine teams this season. Unbeaten St. Joseph’s of Division I is among the headliners.

Other teams include St. Michael, host Episcopal, Academy of Our Lady, Parkview Baptist, Zachary, Lafayette and The Dunham School.

Three rounds of pool play are set for Friday. Bracket play begins at 9 a.m. Saturday. The title contest is set for 11 a.m. The final for the Dutchtown tourney is set for 6:30 p.m. Saturday; the Brusly Invitational title is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Swimming

The first CCSL meet starts at 8 a.m. and the second meet is at 11:40 a.m.

Four competitors have multiple top entry marks — Christian Life’s Anna Morris (200 individual medley, 100 butterfly), East Ascension’s Caroline Core (50, 100 freestyles), Catholic’s Colin Bone (100 butterfly, 500 freestyle) and Brady Grenfell (50, 200 freestyles).

Swimmers with multiple top marks for the second meet are Episcopal’s Chanler Turnley (50 freestyle, 100 breaststroke) and Bailey Stevens (200 , 500 freestyles), Baton Rouge High’s Jerry Ye (50 freestyle, 100 backstroke) and Walker’s Andrew Long (100 butterfly, 100 freestyle).