It was a battle of wills and one of the most intriguing conclusions in Tah-Neva League cross country championship history.
With 100 yards to go in their 2.25-mile eighth-grade boys' race on Wednesday at Centennial Field Complex, Carson Middle School's Richard Shroy was barely holding off friend and teammate Nick Schlager.
By the time they crossed the finish line seconds later, they were neck and neck and nearly in need of a digital camera to see who had won.
When the excitement began to settle from their fantastic finish, Shroy was the one who was beaming.
Shroy handed Schlager his first defeat since the sixth grade. Their identical times of 13:54 on the 2.25-mile run shattered the course mark by 57 seconds.
"This was the meet to do it," Shroy said winning his first middle school cross country race in his final try.
Schlager played the role of good sportsman after his tough defeat.
"I thought it was going to happen eventually. I beat him every other race except this one," said Schlager, who finished ninth in the junior national cross country championships last year.
Their team finished runner-up to South Tahoe.
Other highlights from the meet included Eagle Valley's Brent Moyle winning the sixth- and seventh-grade boys' 1.78-mile race in 11 minutes, 35 seconds. He was 48 seconds off Schlager's course mark.
Yvonne Hollett and Katie McFaren finished 2-3 in the eighth-grade girls' race to help Carson finish runner-up to South Tahoe. Their times were 16:29 and 17:28.