Anne Arundel County falters in state

November 13, 1994|By Steven Kivinski | Steven Kivinski,Contributing Writer

After developing two state champions last year, a third-place individual finish and three fifth-place team finishes was all Anne Arundel County could produce at yesterday's Maryland State Cross Country Championships at Hereford High in Parkton.

Annapolis senior Kristen Nicolini, who earned a state title last year along with Old Mill graduate Jason Reckner, had to settle for third in Class 4A behind state champion and longtime rival Krissy Jost of Perry Hall and runner-up Suzy Burr of Richard Montgomery.

"I just didn't have it today," said Nicolini, who finished the 3-mile course of mostly hills in 20 minutes, 51 seconds -- 33 seconds behind the winner. "I was nervous before the race and once it started I tried to fly out in front of [Jost] going down the hills, but she kept passing me on the up hills.

"One hill in particular, she blew right past me and I think it I kind of broke me."

Said Jost: "She [Nicolini] got me good on the down hills but I felt good going up them. I knew if I was going to win today that I would be hurting at the end and I was, a little bit."

Nicolini's performance and a ninth-place finish by sophomore Alison Ross gave the Panthers a fifth place in team competition.

South River's girls team finished sixth in 2A with the help of top-20 finishes by Colleen McLaughlin (14th) and Jess King (19th).

County champ Jack Longley of South River figured to be Anne Arundel's best hope for a state championship

but he fell away from the pack near the 2-mile mark and never gained ground before finishing 28th in 19:29.

Ryan Stevens of Chesapeake took ninth in the 4A race, followed by Chris Long of Old Mill and Arundel's Blair Morse, who led the Wildcats to fifth place. Severna Park's Paul Mathieu rounded out the county's top 20 finishers with 14th place.

"This was not a banner year for us," said South River coach Scott Baker. "I don't know why Jack didn't run well today but I know I'm still proud of him. When he transferred here from Severna Park as a junior, we were just an up-and-coming program with no leadership and no experience and Jack helped build this team. This is Jack's team."

Broadneck's boys team took sixth in the 3A competition thanks to Ryan Schmidt (20th, 19:22). Stephanie Hooper took 15th for Broadneck's ninth-place girls team.

Glen Burnie's Becky McDivitt took 23rd in the girls 4A race followed by Old Mill's Jessica Davis (25th) and Chesapeake's Stephanie Stevens (33rd).

South River sophomore Jeremy Schropp summed up the disappointment shared by many of the Anne Arundel entrants when he threw his 32nd-place ribbon to the ground in disgust shortly after finishing the 2A boys race.

"We had a plan going in to try and stay within the top 15 to 20 runners but this is a real hilly course and we just fell off the pack," said Schropp. "These hills are tough."

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