Kyle Dawson leads Coatesville to 16-point score
Photo by Karen Ward, PennTrackXC.com
On Saturday at the BIG VALLEY INVITATIONAL , US#4 Coatesville's boys ran through all comers, tallying just 16 points in taking five of the top six spots and seven of the top ten with just a 48-second five-man spread. PA#5 State College put two in the top ten and was 2nd with 68 points. Coatesville #1 man Kyle Dawson won in 16:29. The State College girls were victorious with their 100 points behind the 3rd place 20:13 by Katherine Ward. Forest Hills junior Sarah Strayer won the race in 19:36.
The Friday VIKING INVITATIONAL in Bucks County went on with minor raindrops, but 90 minutes earlier than originally scheduled. The girls varsity race saw two athletes, Sarah Simonetti, (right, photo by Don Rich, PennTrackXC.com) a Pennridge junior, and Allison Sikora, a Council Rock North senior, both beat the old course record. Simonetti broke open the tight race with Sikora in the last mile to smash the 18:32 record set in 2004 by Wissahickon's Annie Wilson with an 18:16. The record had been passed through the Wissahickon girls team starting in 2000 with Paige Miller, then 2001 with Erin Franklin, then 2004 by Annie Wilson.
Sikora was just 12 seconds behind in 18:28. PA#8 Council Rock North's girls were strong winners, while on the boys side, PA#4 Central Bucks South showed a very nice sub-60 compression behind a sub-16 effort from their top runner.
In Chambersburg at the ENOS YEAGER INVITATIONAL , Sarah Morrison defended home turf with a course record, beating fellow senior Lara Crofford of Big Spring. Both Chambersburg squads were dominant.
At the OAKBOURNE RELAYS in Chester County, where runners are paired in a 2 x 2-mile race, the PA#3 Unionville girls had a strong showing, despite not being at full strength. In the boys' race, PA#2 West Chester Henderson was a nearly 1:39 victor over PA#10 Unionville, PA#3 West Chester East had the top tandem by three seconds.
One other Friday meet, the MCALPIN INVITATIONAL at the Episcopal Academy, Devon Campus, was cancelled. Saturday saw the skies open up across PA where runners experienced everything from drizzle to drenching downpours. Two of the Saturday meets had been cancelled Friday in anticipation of the storm.
The BEAR MOUNTAIN RIVER RUN at Lock Haven University, and the MAROON & GOLD CLASSIC at Kutztown University were both victims of Ernesto.
At the MCDOWELL INVITATIONAL , Sarah Lonzi of Bradford posted the best time of the day in horrible conditions, running a 19:19 to win the AAA Girls race, and to lead her team to a dominating win with just 26 points on a 1:54 compression. Mercyhurst Prep senior Michael Stolar ran 15:49 in the AA race, the best of the day, to beat fellow senior Ben Hahn of Smethport by five seconds. In the AAA Boys race, it was Cathedral Prep placing four in the top ten that helped to seal a narrow 54-57 win over Bradford.
At the FAIRVIEW INVITATIONAL , the Taylor Allderdice girls took five of the top eight spots for 27 points and the win, The Fairview boys swept 3rd through 7th place to tally just 25 points.
At the HORNET HARRIER INVITATIONAL at Hickory, Neshannock junior Kacey Gibson got off to a great start, racing to an 18:52 solo win. But it was Sharon that took the team title by a 54-67 score over West Middlesex. Sharon placed three in the top nine. In the boys' race, it was almost a West Middlesex sweep, as five runners placed in the top six.
It was a Tamaqua kind of day at the SHAMOKIN AREA PURPLE & WHITE. Not that it always rains in Tamaqua... but for the prior three years, there have been two very talented runners from Tamaqua who have made their marks on the state scene, one winning a state XC title. That title belongs to senior Isaac Dunkelberger, who had a race on his feet with Exeter's Nick Hilton, who was 2nd. Dunkelberger ran 16:43 in the monsoon conditions. The Tamaqua girls actually lost the team title at this meet on the 6th runner tiebreaker, but senior Alexa Griffiths started the scoring with one point with her 20:39. Blue Mountain took the title behind a 3rd place 21:41 by Vanessa Breslin.
Placing three in the top 13 at the GATEWAY INVITATIONAL, the Baldwin boys team defeated Hempfield 64-82 in a steady drizzle. David Adley was the top finisher for Baldwin, taking 3rd in 16:48. Penn-Trafford's Josh Cristopher repeated as Gateway champ with a 16:29. In the girls' race, it was Baldwin's Kristie Dornes going 19:38, barely holding off Hempfield's Amber Valaimont, who was credited with the same time. Behind 5th, 7th, and 8th place efforts, Norwin was the team champ.