Cross country

December 16, 2007

GIRLS

Runner of the Year

Sara Bailey

C. Milton Wright

Bailey has been a consistent runner throughout her career at C.M. Wright, but she came up big in the crucial races this year.

She won the Upper Chesapeake Bay Athletic Conference championship, and then followed with a victory at the Class 4A North regional meet to help the Mustangs take second place there.

Bailey closed things out with a seventh-place finish in the Class 4A state meet with a time of 19 minutes, 46 seconds to help the Mustangs win the championship by one point over Eleanor Roosevelt of Prince George's County.

Coach of the Year

Donnie Mickey

C. Milton Wright

Using his team's struggles at the state meet last year for motivation, Mickey guided the Mustangs to the Class 4A state title.

The key was that the Mustangs didn't peak too early, something that happened last year and caused them to fade at season's end.

Mickey kept his team on pace all season long, always pointing toward the state meet.

COUNTY PLAYERS ON IAAM TEAM: A Conference: John Carroll: Erika Stasakova, Elizabeth Tauber.

Note: Player and Coach of the Year were selected by Jeff Seidel after consultation with The Sun staff and area coaches. The IAAM team was selected through voting by league coaches. The county public schools and the Upper Chesapeake Bay Athletic Conference do not select all-league teams.

BOYS

Runner of the Year

Pete Houlihan

C. Milton Wright

The senior has been one of the metro area's most consistent runners over the past few years, helping the Mustangs be a force in the Upper Chesapeake Bay Athletic Conference.

He ran well in big races throughout the fall. Houlihan finished fourth in the large schools division at the Bull Run in the first part of the season, and he closed the season strongly by finishing second in the Class 4A North region as the Mustangs scored an impressive victory. After that, Houlihan ended up eighth in the state meet to help C.M. Wright finish fourth.

Coach of the Year

Shawn Loper

Bel Air

Loper has done a good job of gradually building the Bobcats' cross country program. Loper took over the team eight years ago, and the Bobcats have continually gotten tougher. This year, the boys finished second in the UCBAC and followed that with another second-place performance in the Class 3A East regional.

Bel Air ended its season with a fourth-place finish in the Class 3A state meet. The Bobcats ran well in several tough meets and peaked in time for the postseason.

Note: Player and Coach of the Year were selected by Jeff Seidel after consultation with The Sun staff and area coaches.

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