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PREVIEW: PD girls title up for grabs
PD girls title race up for grabs
By Dan Maher | Correspondent
The biggest impact on girls’ cross country this season will probably be the absence of Emily Webb, who graduated from Gloucester as four-time individual district champion.
The Dukes may still have enough talent to add to their string of three straight Peninsula District titles, but the individual race should be a bit more competitive. Gloucester still boasts a strong contender, since junior Hannah Varnell finished fourth in the district and enjoyed great track success last year.
Last year’s district runner-up was Hampton sophomore Kristina Woodard, so she stands out as a favorite to inherit Webb’s legacy. Gloucester junior Amber Lee finished sixth in 2006, so she provides some good depth and helps make the Dukes district favorites. Bethel will be Gloucester’s most likely challenger, but Hampton and Menchville have good potential as well.
The Bay Rivers District also has a void at the top with the graduation of Lafayette’s Anastasia Abid. Jamestown junior Rachel Apostoles is a likely candidate to step up from her third place finish in 2006 to claim the individual championship, but the Rams’ Becky Dobosy is a sophomore with lots of potential and New Kent’s Jaimie Lull is a strong runner.
The team battle for district title should be wide open. Lafayette could be in position to repeat as champs, but New Kent looks like a challenger who may overtake them, and Grafton and Jamestown probably have enough talent to interject themselves into the mix as well.
King William lost last year’s Tidewater District meet by one point, but the return of individual champion Samantha Carter and runner-up Erin Dandridge make them a likely candidate to unseat West Point this year, since the Pointers lack depth. Peninsula Catholic returns six of their top seven runners from last year’s second place TCIS team, and that may be enough quality athletes to push the Knights to the top this year.
PENINSULA DISTRICT GIRLS’ CROSS COUNTRY INFO BOX
TEAMS TO WATCH: Gloucester, Bethel, Hampton, Kecoughtan, Warwick, and Menchville.
RUNNERS TO WATCH: Kristina Woodard, Hampton, So.; Hannah Varnell, Gloucester, Jr.; Amber Lee, Gloucester, Sr.; Arianna Betts, Bethel, Jr.; Marcella Doreste, Menchville, Jr.; Ashley Dixon, Warwick, So.; Samantha Drake, Gloucester, Sr.; Rachel Davies, Hampton, Jr.
MEETS TO WATCH: Bethel vs. Menchville, Sept. 11 @ 4 p.m. (Riverview); Hampton vs. Kecoughtan, Sept. 11 @ 4 p.m. (Gosnold Hope Park); Menchville vs. Warwick, Sept. 25 @ 4 p.m. (Mariners’ Museum Park); Kecoughtan vs. Bethel, Oct. 2 @ 4 p.m. (Sandy Bottom Park); Gloucester vs. Warwick, Oct. 2 @ 4 p.m. (Mariners’ Museum Park); Bethel vs. Hampton, Oct. 9 @ 4 p.m. (Sandy Bottom Park); Bethel vs. Gloucester, Oct. 16 @ 4 p.m. (Beaverdam Park); Peninsula District Meet, Oct. 25 @ 3:00 p.m. (Newport News Park); Eastern Region Meet, Nov. 1 (Bells Mill Park, Chesapeake); State Meet, Nov. 10 (Great Meadows Park, The Plains).
BAY RIVERS DISTRICT GIRLS’ CROSS COUNTRY INFO BOX
TEAMS TO WATCH: Lafayette, New Kent, Jamestown, Tabb and Grafton.
RUNNERS TO WATCH: Rachel Apostoles, Jamestown, Jr.; Becky Dobosy, Lafayette, So.; Jaimie Lull, New Kent, Sr.; Amanda Fessman, New Kent, Sr.; Victoria Maston, Lafayette, Sr.; Haley Kopczynski, Grafton, Sr.; Christine Bingham, Jamestown, Jr.; Abigail Fredericksen, Tabb, Jr.
MEETS TO WATCH: William & Mary Invitational, Sept. 22 @ 8 a.m. (Eastern State Hospital); Grafton and Poquoson @ Lafayette, Sept. 26 @ 4 p.m.; Maymont Festival, Sept. 29 @ 9 a.m. (Maymont Park, Richmond); Lafayette, New Kent and Jamestown @ Tabb, Oct. 17 @ 4 p.m.; Bay Rivers District Meet, Oct. 25 (Eastern State Hospital); Region I Meet, Nov. 1 (Loriella Park, Fredericksburg); State Meet, Nov. 10 (Great Meadows Park, The Plains).
PRIVATE SCHOOLS AND SMALL SCHOOLS
TEAMS TO WATCH: Peninsula Catholic, King William and West Point.
RUNNERS TO WATCH: Amanda Panholzer, Peninsula Catholic, Sr.; Caroline Wilke, Walsingham, Sr.; Colleen Thom, Peninsula Catholic, So.; Samantha Carter, King William, Sr.; Kylie Regan, Peninsula Catholic, Jr.; Erin Dandridge, King William, So.; Sarah Simmons, West Point, Sr.; Julia Guerrant, West Point, Fr.
MEETS TO WATCH: Bill McGough Invitational, Sept. 15 @ 9:30 a.m. (Peninsula Catholic); King William and Lancaster @ West Point, Sept. 19 @ 4:30 p.m.; Peninsula Catholic @ Nansemond-Suffolk Academy, Oct. 11 @ 4 p.m.; Virginia Catholic League Championship, Oct. 23 (Newport News Park); Tidewater District Meet, Oct. 24 @ 3 p.m.; Tidewater Conference of Independent Schools Meet, Nov. 2 @ 3:40 p.m.; Virginia Independent Schools State Meet, Nov. 9 @ 2 p.m. (Woodberry Forest).
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