Josh Brickell's high school cross country career didn't end the way he hoped on Saturday.
The three-time state champion from Peachtree Ridge had to drop out of the Foot Locker National Championship after being sick all week with bronchitis.
"I was hoping to be good to race," Brickell said by phone interview. "It was no way the expectation (to drop out). I thought I was good to race, but it was out of my control. It was pretty tough (to drop out)."
Brickell missed three days of school after getting sick last weekend. He flew out to San Diego on Thursday with hopes he would be fine by race day. But when he got to Balboa Park on Saturday, he was still not fully healthy. He made it halfway through the race before he dropped out.
"I really couldn't breathe and started slowing down and everyone was passing me," Brickell said.
Brickell is the second Georgian to ever qualify for Foot Locker nationals twice. He took eighth last year as a junior, which is tied for the best finish by a Georgia runner.
New Jersey's Ed Cheserek won the national title for a second year with a time of 14 minutes, 59 seconds. Virginia's Sean McGorty was runner-up with a time of 15:05. Brickell was second to McGorty at the Foot Locker South Regional.
McIntosh's Brad Hort was the only other Georgia runner in the race and he finished 35th in the 40-man race with a time of 16:09.
"It was pretty disappointing way to end things," Brickell said. "Some things are not really in my control."