Brianna Gallaher doesn’t know that a cross country season can end without a state championship.
For every year of her high school career, Gallaher has finished on top of the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools 1A rankings.
She joked before the year started that the odd number of state-champion plaques had been messing with her OCD a little bit and that a fourth would make that wall look much cleaner.
Her eyes were set to “Go out with a bang” and she was able to do just that, finishing in front of the other 60 runners on Cottonwood Creek’s Golf Course in Waco, Monday morning.
Founders Christian’s Sara Baker took the lead out of the gates and Gallaher stayed on pace with her for the first three-quarters of a mile. Around the mile-marker, Gallaher made her move and never looked back.
By the time the second and final mile was finished, the second-place runner still trailed by 38 seconds and Gallaher finished on top once again.
It was a validation of all the hard work she had put in over her years in Bellville and further solidifies her chance at making the step to the college ranks that much easier.
Although with plenty of the school year remaining, good grades are the numbers she must keep up now, running headlong to the end of her high school career altogether.
She wasn't the only repeat champion this year, joining 3A’s Madison Brown (Round Rock), 4A’s Habtamu Geta (Bay Area) and Ellie Catron (Woodlands), 5A’s Carter Cheeseman (Fort Worth) and 6A’s Brandon Seagraves (Cathedral) as consecutive solo champions.
Not only that, Gallaher became only the fifth four-time individual state champion since 1991 according to Lone Star Christian Sports Network.
Mike Sanderson (1991-1994 for Houston Briarwood), Traci Fraser (2000-2003 for St. Agnes), Carolyn Bell (2003-2006 for McKinney) and Elizabeth Reneau (2014-2017 for Argyle Liberty) are the only other runners to achieve that feat over the last 27 years.