Detour takes Jost on long way to invitational win

October 09, 1994|By Bill Blewett | Bill Blewett,Special to The Sun

It was a day of tight schedules for two of the favored runners in the Harford Invitational Cross Country Classic at Bel Air yesterday.

Perry Hall's Krissy Jost and Bel Air's Michelle Apland each had scheduling difficulties with the meet. Jost prevailed despite hers. Apland did not.

Jost ran away from the field in the seeded girls event, building a 30-second lead by mid-race. But just past the two-mile mark, she missed a turn.

"Everyone started yelling at me, 'wrong way, wrong way,' " said Jost, who lost almost all of her lead by the time she backtracked to correct her course.

Jost had arrived too late for the course walk after taking the Scholastic Assessment Test yesterday morning. She had won the race last year, but construction on the course at Harford Community College forced major changes in the route.

She had enough reserve, however, to pull away again over the last mile to win by 21 seconds in 20 minutes, 8 seconds, the fastest girls time of the day.

Apland carried Harford County's best hope for a win in the field of 78 high school teams after her victory in the Salesianum Invitational in Delaware last week. That win came in the %o large-school division, but yesterday she ran in the small-school division, the first varsity race.

"We had to run in the small-school race because Bel Air's homecoming activities started in mid-afternoon," said coach Alan Dean. "I almost opted not to run them at all."

Still, homecoming events apparently caught up with Apland, who is president of her senior class. She dropped into second place early and never closed the gap on leader Liz Reeser from Governor Mifflin High School in Pennsylvania.

"Michelle had no legs at all," said Dean. "She was stressed from building floats and doing speeches. She said she didn't sleep all week."

Reeser won in 20:54, and Apland was second in 21:25. Megan McNew, North Harford sophomore, placed third in 21:45.

Erin Chlumsky of Fallston was the only other Harford girl in the top 20 of the small schools race. She placed 10th in 22:04 to lead the Cougars to seventh place among 17 teams.

C. Milton Wright's Amy Altman ran 21:36 for 13th in the seeded girls race as the Mustangs placed seventh among 15 teams.

Eric Benjamin led the Wright boys team to 12th place in the seeded race. He finished 22nd in 18:23. Mike Martinek (21st in 18:48) paced Fallston to seventh place in the small schools boys race.

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