The Bohemia Manor girls beat Cambridge-South Dorchester by three points to claim this year's 1A East team title. (Photo by Craig Amoss)
1A North Regional (Results)
As expected Kaleb Berhanu and the Pikesville boys dominated the 1A North region on their home turf on Thursday. Berhanu and the Panthers went 1-2-3-4-6, putting their top four between 18:11 and 18:51 and setting themselves up for a potential top-five finish at next week's state meet. Loch Raven finished second, putting four boys in the top ten between 19:11 and 20:06.
ACCE senior Esmeralda Romero won her third straight race, adding a regional title to her season ledger tha also includes a Baltimore City title. She beat Pikesville senior Logan Bierer by ten seconds, while no other runners were within 90 seconds. The Western Tech girls put five in the top 11 and went 1-2-4-5-6 among scoring finishers for a dominant team victory, while Loch Raven were the only other complete team in the field.
1A South Regional (Results)
After two consecutive 1A South runner-up finishes, Angel Ramirez won Thursday's race by 48 seconds; it was a breakthrough performance on the season after he did not race at the Prince George's County Championships. Meanwhile the Central boys loaded up the front of the field, putting their top six runners in the top 11 to take the team title.
Gwynn Park had the top two finishers on the girls' side on Thursday, as juniors Samarie Brackett and Sanaa Manley went 1-2. The Largo girls were the only full team in the field.
It was, as expected, a battle of sophomores at The Jungle on Thursday, won by Bohemia Manor's Day Leone. He held off Cambridge-South Dorchester's John Condon by ten seconds as the two runners ran well ahead of the rest of the boys' field. Condon's effort was not in vain, however, as the Vikings dominated what was expected to be a little tighter of a team battle, scoring 31 points to Patterson Mill's 51. They put six runners in the top 15, while only Patterson Mill had as many as four. The race for the final qualifying spot was tighter, as Snow Hill (153 points) held off Kent County (163) for the last spot.
Sarah Condon defended The Jungle for the Vikings in the girls' race, capturing her first career XC regional title. It was a strong effort from the defending state champion that sets her up as one of the top runners once again next weekend. However, the roles reversed in the team scores for the girls as Bohemia Manor, led by runner-up Maya Osborne, edged Cambridge-South Dorchester by three points thanks to a 1-5 spread more than 90 seconds tighter. Four out of the top five complete teams qualified for the state meet, with Perryville and Patterson Mill rounding out the field.
1A West Regional (Results)
The only race to be postponed to Friday due to Thursday's inclement weather, the 1A West regionals wrapped up the action this week. Williamsport senior Zane Chalker won handily on the Smithsburg High School course for the fourth time this year. Behind Chalker, the state-favorite Wildcats put four runners in the top 13 to walk away regional champions with 46 points. The race for second place was tight - Smithsburg (88), Allegany (91) and Brunswick (98) finished within ten points of each other. Northern Garrett edged their county rivals from Southern Garrett to nab the final state qualifying spot, while two of the top four finishers (Key's Cole LaPierre and Catoctin's Alexander Contreras) could contend for a top-five spot next weekend.
Smithsburg junior Daylie Younker won a meeting between two state contenders, beating out Mountain Ridge senior Hannah Muir by 13 seconds on her home course. The Brunswick girls were the top team in the 1A West region for the second year in a row, finishing with five of the top 14 runners on Friday. They will be right in the mix for a team title next weekend along with the top two teams from 1A East. The Allegany girls won a close race with Williamsport (beating them by just six points) to grab the sixth and final state qualifying spot.