The Anne Arundel County Championships will take place at South River High School on Tuesday. (Photo by Mike Piotrowski)
County and conference championships wrap up this week (except for the IAAM and MIAA championships). We outline all of the girls meets of the week.
Anne Arundel County Championships (10/22 - Meet Page)
The Annapolis girls will be one of many 4A East teams to line up at the Anne Arundel County Championships on Tuesday. (Photo by Keeley Olson)
The Severna Park girls are coming off arguably their best performance at Frank Keyser when they nearly took down Howard. The Falcons have five of the top ten girls in the 5K virtual meet, although that preview probably sells short the Broadneck girls, who finished just 37 points behind Severna Park in the elite race at Bull Run earlier this year.
While Severna Park is the obvious team favorite in the team race, the battle for the individual title may be tighter. Arundel's Niya Torres hasn't lost to a fellow Anne Arundel County runner since the first race of the season at the Seahawk Invitational, but Severna Park's Sophia Zell, Broadneck's Anna Janke and Annapolis' Kate Ericson have made things close on more than one occasion.
Another interesting story to watch is how the team scores from five through seven shake out. Annapolis, Chesapeake-AA and Old Mill have teams worthy of competing at the state meet this year, but the 4A East regional meet is going to be ridiculously deep. Take out Chesapeake but add in both Howard and Leonardtown, and that's eight teams fighting for seven spots. Tuesday's race may be a preview for those teams who will be fighting for a ticket to states next Thursday.
Virtual Meet: 5K
UCBAC Championships (10/22 - Meet Page)
Maddison Buddenbohn and the Edgewood girls will be seeking their first top-two finish of the decade at the UCBAC Championships. (Photo by John Roemer)
One of the state's top sophomores, Mackenzie Morrison is looking to solidify her position as the top runner in the UCBAC - and possibly the entire 3A field - on Tuesday. Morrison finished fourth in the elite field at Bull Run and then ran a huge 5K personal best (18:33, the MD #6 time) at Paul Short. Morrison is also coming off a Chesapeake Divisional meet where she beat Lindsay Perry and Haley Cummins. Another victory on Tuesday could mark her as possibly the team to beat in the 3A field this year.
With one of the best group of top four runners in the state the Bobcats are clear team favorites on Tuesday. Meanwhile, Perry and Cummins will try and lead the Wright girls to, at the very least, a second-place finish. The Edgewood girls finished just four points behind the Mustangs at the Chesapeake Divisional meet earlier in the month as they put four runners before Wright's third.
Bayside Championships (10/23 - Meet Page)
It's been over a month since Kent Island raced on a big stage, but the last time they raced it was a the senior-freshman duo of Charlotte Kratovil-Lavelle and Reese Delp leading them at Bull Run. Behind their 1-2 punch the Lady Bucs look like favorites to repeat their success at Cambridge-South Dorchester on Wednesday where they handily won the Rumble in the Jungle back in September.
Other runners to watch include Cambridge-South Dorchester senior Sarah Condon, last year's 1A state champion, and North Caroline senior Zoe Durner.
Carroll County Championships (10/23 - Meet Page)
The Liberty girls, behind freshmen Izzy (number 708) and Julia Lucas and seniors Jenna Zietowski and Sammie Spargo, will be slight favorites heading into Wednesday's Carroll County Championships. (Photo by Craig Amoss)
The South Carroll girls won last year's Carroll County title by three points over Westminster. This year they will have a new challenger, as the Liberty girls have received a jolt from freshmen Izzy and Julia Lucas. The Lions won the latest matchup between the two teams at the Frank Keyser Invitational, although the gap between them was just ten points. A few weeks ago, South Carroll beat Liberty on their own course at the Crossfire Invitational on a sixth-runner tiebreaker.
The Cavaliers have the frontrunner advantage in junior Grace Siehler who has only lost one race so far this season (a second-place effort at Bull Run). Her latest win was a dominant 18:00 solo performance at Frank Keyser to win the small school division. This week's county championships won't be without its star power, either. Manchester Valley sophomore Rubie Goffena is coming off her first big win of the year at the Gunpowder Invitational, and she won last year's county meet by 45 seconds. Last year's runner-up, Kathryn Hopkins, will also be in the mix on Wednesday.
Howard County Championships (10/23 - Meet Page)
The Centennial girls own the counties second-smallest 1-5 time spread in Howard County behind only the favorites from Howard High School. (Photo by Erik Cloyd)
Our top-ranked team in the entire state, the Howard girls are the clear favorites to defend their county title at Centennial High School on Wednesday. They entered the year with a strong returning squad, but their depth has improved considerably throughout the year with additions such as sophomore Nimrit Ahuja (who has the top three mile time in the county) and freshman Ella Werdell. It's not out of the question for the Lions to score 15 points at this year's meet in a county field that lacks a true frontrunner outside of Howard.
Four teams - Reservoir, River Hill, Atholton and Centennial - all have cases to finish second place, even though they go about it much differently. Centennial (47 seconds) and Reservoir (57 seconds) have two of the three smallest 1-5 spreads in the county, while River Hill's Chloe McGeehan and Atholton's Aanchal Kasargod give each squad a potential top-ten finisher.
Prince George's County Championships (10/23 - Meet Page)
Javon Watts is the clear favorite to win her fourth straight PG County title on Wednesday. (Photo by Craig Amoss)
Javon Watts and the C.H. Flowers girls have not lost a county championship while Watts has been a Jaguar, and their 2019 squad may be their best yet. With their entire top seven having run 21:40 or better this year, the Flowers girls will likely roll through counties and regionals on their way to the state meet in November. Roosevelt's Rachel Antigua and Wise's Jordan Mozie could likely be Watt's top competitors at Fort Washington on Saturday.
SMAC Championships (10/23 - Meet Page)
Cooper Brotherton is just one of a talented field of sophomores in the SMAC. (Photo by John Roemer)
Oakley Olson has finished fourth and second at the SMAC Championships in each of the last two years. If the pattern continues, this year will be the one she wins her first individual conference cross country title. Olson ran 17:44 in a runaway victory at Frank Keyser on October 12, the best three mile time in the conference by over a minute. Next on the list? Olson's teammate, Hannah Mack. Needless to say the Northern girls look like strong candidates to take home yet another conference title. Calvert, Leonardtown and Huntingtown rank second through fourth in each of the two virtual meets and will battle for second-place honors on Wednesday.
This year's SMAC field also includes plenty of familiar faces and breakout runners. Leonardtown's Nelle Ray won the conference title as a freshman in 2017, and sophomore Parker O'Brien owns the fourth-fastest three mile time in the SMAC. Sophomores rule in the SMAC this year: the field includes the Great Mills duo of Cooper Brotherton (18:58 three mile) and Sophie Chan (20:29 5K), Calvert's Kristen Prince (19:14 5K), Chopticon's Blair Fowler (19:12 three mile) and Northern's Sydney Yankanich (19:27 5K) and Julia Devine (19:44 5K).
Frederick County Championships (10/24 - Meet Page)
The Frederick and Washington County teams met this past weekend at the CMC Championships. With five runners in the top ten, led by senior Sara Jarman, the Urbana girls easily took the team title over Middletown. Another victory on Thursday would be the Hawks' third straight Frederick County title. Two freshmen, Lula Masters and Ivy Coldren, have emerged for Urbana alongside Karly and Emily McDonnell - and not to mention Ella Auderset, who has recently made her season debut - to give them substantial depth behind Jarman.
Meanwhile, Jarman and the rest of the Frederick County field might end up chasing Middletown freshman Erin McQuitty for the second week in a row. McQuitty's 19:41 effort at the Carlisle Invitational earlier this year is the only sub-20 5K time in the county so far this year, and she won the CMC title last Friday at Boonsboro. The Middletown girls are potential top three 2A team in the state and another solid performance on Thursday could give them momentum heading into the 2A West regionals on Halloween.
Washington County Championships (10/24 - Meet Page)
The Boonsboro girls will be seeking their fourth straight Washington County title on Thursday. (Photo by Craig Amoss)
The Boonsboro girls have won three straight Washington County titles and that streak seems poised to continue on Thursday at Smithsburg High School. Of the eight girls in the county who have run 21:00 or better for three miles this season, four are Warriors, led by junior Samantha Agostini. Meanwhile, Smithsburg's Daylie Younker has broken out as a junior, coming off a county-leading 19:20 three mile effort at Frank Keyser (she is the only runner in the county to have run under 20 minutes).