Wright's Coogan wins, but barely, over Remeto Girls' race is feature of Harford Invitational

October 05, 1997|By Bill Blewett | Bill Blewett,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Most of the spectator interest at the Harford Cross Country Invitational yesterday was focused on the girls large school varsity race. Halfway through, however, Kelly Coogan made it look like no race at all.

Running on her home course in Bel Air, the C. Milton Wright senior built a 20-second lead on a field that included McDonogh's star freshman, Kacie Remeto.

Coogan, whose favorite tactic is to push the pace from start to finish, has set course records in three races this fall. Remeto, her former Harford Track Club teammate, has set two records herself, on her McDonogh course and in the Mercersberg (Pa.) Invitational.

Though far behind after two miles, Remeto showed the race was not over. The 14-year-old from Fallston closed the gap steadily over the last mile and when she crossed the finish line, she was just two seconds behind Coogan.

"I'm surprised she didn't catch me in the last mile," said Coogan, who was timed in 19: 33 over the 5K course. "I was in the worst pain. A side stitch hit me in the last mile."

The two had the fastest times of the day in the two girls divisions. Jana Kaufmann of Lampeter-Strasburg (Pa.), won the small school race in 19: 41, with Kate Frande of Mt. Hebron second in 20: 13.

Frande paced the Vikings to a team victory with 60 points, edging second place Lampeter-Strasburg by 2 points. Angie Hill of Havre de Grace (fourth) and Becky Strobel of John Carroll (tenth) registered top 10 finishes.

McDonogh got a big finish from another of its runners in the small school boys race, as Brandon Cole earned his first invitational meet victory.

Cole, who arrived too late for the course walk and was unsure of the route, trailed the leaders through 2 1/2 miles. He then surged to the front and pulled away to win by 7 seconds in 17: 34.

His McDonogh team placed third with 105 points behind winner York Suburban (34 points). Jon Thelen of Susquehannock (Pa.) won the large school boys race in 16: 22 as Pennsylvania runners took nine of the top 10 places. In the girls large school race, Mount de Sales took second place with 77 points behind Carlisle (57). Jenn Aversa (fifth) and Colleen McGarvey (ninth) were the top finishers for Mount de Sales.

Pub Date: 10/05/97

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