Bryn Mawr wins third consecutive championship

IAAM cross country

High Schools

October 30, 2003|By Brendan Glaccum | Brendan Glaccum,SUN STAFF

Fourth-ranked Bryn Mawr employed a different strategy than usual and withstood a valiant effort by Mercy and a dominating performance by Maryvale's Sullivan twins to claim its third straight Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland championship meet and fourth in five years, yesterday at Oregon Ridge Park.

Led by Laura Paulsen (fourth), Lauren Childs (sixth) and Laura Drossner (12th), the Mawrtians had their best five runners all finish in the top 20 and won the meet with a team score of 58.

"We changed up our team strategy for this meet," Drossner said. "We sacrificed a little of the individual performances for the good of the team. We really worked hard for it."

Mercy finished second with 73 points. Karen Buchheister came in fifth, Maggie King finished eighth and Jamie Antonious 11th for the ninth-ranked Magic, which had won the Baltimore-Washington Invitational in convincing fashion four days earlier.

Fifth-ranked Maryvale finished third with 93 points behind the strength of its top two runners, juniors Glenna and Kelly Sullivan, who led the entire 3.1 miles and took the top two overall spots.

Glenna Sullivan finished in 19 minutes, 48 seconds and reclaimed the individual crown she won in 2001, after finishing a disappointing fourth in last year's meet. Kelly Sullivan finished second for the second straight year, finishing eight seconds behind her sister.

The Lions were unable to capitalize on the Sullivan sisters' success. Julia Clark finished 17th, but Maryvale's next two runners finished 36th and 37th.

Bryn Mawr's motivation was markedly different than that of a year ago. Heading into the 2002 meet, the Mawrtians said they were looking for a little respect they believed they had not received on a state-wide level. Coach Jason George said this year's focus was more on the league than the state. Still, the Mawrtians completed an undefeated dual meet schedule and with that came the pressure of meeting expectations.

George, after considering Mercy's impressive victory in the Baltimore-Washington Invitational and knowing that Maryvale's Sullivans could take the top two spots, said he was a little nervous.

George wanted his top three runners to run together for the first mile.

"We knew Mercy's top three would be tough," he said. "We didn't want to concentrate too much on the Sullivans and move back of the first three from Mercy. Running together, they push each other, but also I think it's psychologically damaging to the other teams when they see a pack of yellow jerseys together."

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