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Hubs turn County into child's play

October 29, 1998

Cross County ChampionshipsBy RON SOMERS / Sports Editor

photo: RIC DUGAN / staff photographer




BOONSBORO - Kari McCarty had a cold; Alex McAbee had been unbeatable in some races and very beatable in other races.

But when it came to the Washington County cross country championships Wednesday, the two North Hagerstown seniors were the runners everyone was keying on.

The Rhoderick girls from Boonsboro made their plans for an upset of McCarty.

"I stay as close to Kari as I can,'' said Angie Rhoderick.

"And I stay as close to her as I can,'' Anita Rhoderick said, nodding at Angie.

--cont. from sports page--

But in the end, neither could stay with McCarty, cold or no cold. She covered the three-mile layout in 19 minutes, 10.7 seconds. Angie Rhoderick ran second in 19:52.4, followed by Anita Rhoderick in 19:58.9.

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"I've had a cold all week. It's at its worst stage now,'' McCarty said.

Despite her easy win, she was concerned about Angie Rhoderick.

"I've been worried about Angie,'' she said. "She's been close a couple of times.''

Before the final team scores were tallied, North coach Frank McAdoo was worried the Hubs girls would not win their third straight county title.

Stephanie Kurtz was battling a fever, and Bethany Shoaf was battling knee and toe injuries. But North's depth made the difference. In addition to McCarty's first, North took seventh (Colleen Somers), ninth (Suzanne Himmerich), 13th (Kurtz) and 15th (Shoaf) to edge Boonsboro, 45-52.

In the boys race, a pack of five stuck together for the first mile, until McAbee made his move and left everyone behind. He won in 16:08.2, beating Boonsboro's Chuck Wade, who clocked 16:25.2.

The North boys did the same thing the girls did and won their fifth straight county title and 12th in 13 years. The Hubs placed their five scoring runners in a tight bunch to score 19 points to 53 for runner-up Boonsboro.

North's Chris Pereschuk took third, followed by teammates Brad Mentzer (fourth), Johnavin McKinley (fifth) and Erik Lenhart (sixth).

"I stuck with Alex as long as I could,'' Wade said.

When McAbee made his move about a third of the way into the race, he let him go.

"I just ran my race,'' Wade said.

So did McAbee.

He said he deliberately did not push the pace.

"Instead of running an aggressive race and losing, I thought I'd ensure myself a win and take it easy,'' McAbee said.

He said he was concerned about Wade, who finished second in the Monocacy Valley Athletic League meet on October 17 to McAbee's fourth.

"Lately, he has gotten a lot better,'' McAbee said.

But once he made his move, it was McAbee's race, and North's day.

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