Photo by Craig Amoss
It's grown to be one of the biggest races in the DC area after just four years and Saturday's DCXC Invitational brought more of the top-level competition that athletes and fans alike have come to expect. Hot temperatures slowed down the early races a bit, but by the time the upperclassmen races came the conditions were much improved and the times reflected it. Here were the top moments - from a Maryland perspective - from this year's DCXC Invitational.
Abigail Green And The WJ Girls Haven't Gone Anywhere
Impressive early season performances by rival 4A teams, along with the absence of the team's star senior, made it seem as if this could be the year that the Wildcats' state-title streak comes to an end. Green returned earlier this week in a dual meet before Saturday's showdown with National Cathedral's Page Lester, a race that did not disappoint. Both girls ran sub-18 - which makes Green the first and only Maryland girl to dip below that mark in the 5K this season. When all the results from the races were combined the WJ girls emerged victorious, ahead of Wootton (second) and Whitman (third).
Lockett, Nakasaka Provide A Sneak Peak Of The Moco Championships
Ryan Lockett and Adam Nakasaka entered the season as state contenders in their respective classifications and as the likely top two runners in Montgomery County. Their first meeting last week at the Oatlands Invitational was uneventful as Lockett struggled, but Saturday's race at DCXC provides a much more clear preview for next month's final showdown between the two. Lockett edged Nakasaka by five seconds as the two dropped the second- and third-fastest 5Ks in Maryland this year, respectively. With the two teams scheduled for different meets in early October, fans will have to wait another four weeks before what could be their final race on the course (not including any national qualifying races).
Ray, Satsangi Bring Home Medals For Maryland
It wasn't quite an eight-for-eight sweep for the Old Line state on Saturday, but two girls represented Maryland on the podium on Saturday. Leonardtown's Nelle Ray won the first varsity race of the day, putting more than 30 seconds between herself and the next-fastest runner in the freshman race. The freshman girls' race might have been Maryland's best race of the day, as four of the top six girls were from Maryland schools. Poolesville's Nandini Satsangi was similarly dominant, winning by more than fifteen seconds and dipping below 19 minutes for the first time all season.
Whitman Boys Dominate Junior Race
The Walt Whitman boys have emerged as one of the top teams in 4A this season behind a very good class of junior boys. Aaron Bratt led the way in second place, beating out Wootton's John Riker for the second consecutive year at this race. Whitman put four more boys between 16:51 and 17:15 to seal the Vikings' win in the class of 2019 competition. The team finished third overall when combining all of the races, beating out country rivals Northwest, B-CC and Wootton. They could be the top team in the county, not just this year, but next as well.