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County runners dominate top 10s

November 13, 1999|By AL DITZEL

PARKTON, Md. - Aside from Middletown High School's girls team and their top runner Emily Buzzell, the area missed out on the gold medals Saturday in the Maryland cross country championships at Hereford High School.

Still, there were plenty of good runners and good team performances. Beginning in the morning session, Thomas Johnson took fourth in the highly competitive 3A boys division with 165 points, well behind first-place River Hill (64 points). James Kawalek finished 13th in the individual race with a time of 17 minutes, 27.96 seconds.

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Meanwhile, North Hagerstown, which finished second in 2A last year, finished 16th in 3A this year with Erik Lenhart placing 20th at 17:39.09.

In the afternoon races, Middletown finished third in 2A with 132 points, 40 points behind first-place Urbana. Mark Samuel was Middletown's top runner in seventh.

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"That's acceptable,'' the junior said. "I finished like 54th and 55th my first two years here.''

Still, Samuel's big move wasn't enough to overtake Walkersville's Doug Allen in sixth.

"As always, my goal is to win the race,'' said Allen, who was running without a team Saturday. "I finished 10th here last year, so I did better than that.

"I could've done better if I hadn't fallen coming out of the gate,'' he said. "I was late to the starting line and when the gun went off, I really wasn't watching where I was going. I tripped on the (foot) ahead of me. It was totally my fault.''

Allen said he's geared up for the winter track season, which begins Monday.

"Honestly, I can't wait,'' he said. "I really wanted to beat Doug Allen, but that didn't happen,'' Samuel said. "Any one of five teams could have won today's race. It just so happens one ran away with it.''

Boonsboro, Williamsport, Smithsburg and Catoctin put together a sixth-, seventh-, ninth- and 10th-place showing in the boys 1A race. Luke Bauer of Smithsburg was ninth with a time of 18:03.72. Nathan Buchman of Williamsport was 10th at 18:17.23.

Williamsport's girls team finished fourth in the 1A race, with Smithsburg placing fifth. The local interest in the individual race was between Boonsboro sisters, Angie and Anita Rhoderick. Angie, the senior, outsprinted her sister for fourth place, 21:36.06-21:36.34.

"I really wanted to win the race, but I did the very best I could,'' Angie Rhoderick said. The best came because because Anita pushed her.

"She (Angie) was looking a little sluggish, so I ran up to her and said, 'C'mon, let's go,''' Anita Rhoderick said. "She wanted it just a little more than me. It's her last race and I'm really happy for her.''

"I'm starting to cry,'' Angie Rhoderick said. "It's really my last race. Well, there's cross country at HCC (Hagerstown Community College).''

Jordan Waldron, a freshman, was Smithsburg's top runner this day, placing sixth at 21:44.84. Teammate Laura Stouffer finished ninth at 22:01.06. melissa Arch of Williamsport took 11th with a time of 22:26.66.

Williamsport's next four runners took 16th (Katie Mayhugh), 17th (Lindsay Hovermale), 27th (Sara Drury) and 41st (Karen Elliott).

Smithsburg's next three runners finished 25th (Nikki Centofonti), 35th (Mollie Bauer) and 63rd (Vanessa Eccard).

Kathy Kuzner's 27th-place finish lead Thomas Johnson to 12th-place in 3A competition.

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