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Lilley ran to be the very best

Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year

Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year

December 09, 2008|By ANDREW MASON

Michael Lilley trains so hard and sets his bar so high that it's nearly impossible for him to ever feel satisfied with his results.

The Williamsport senior won six of his nine races this fall, set four course records and has been named The Herald-Mail's 2008 All-Area and All-Washington County Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year.

But he wanted so much more from the season.

"A lot of people would be happy with course records, but I wanted to run faster," Lilley said. "I won, but my times just weren't what I was looking for. There are a lot of guys in the country who still ran a lot faster."

If his goal was just to be the best in the area, perhaps he'd be more pleased.

Here's a closer look at his six victories, all on 3-mile courses:

* Brunswick Invitational (Sept. 13): Won by 43 seconds in a course-record 16:15.

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* Frank Keyser Invitational at Boonsboro (Oct. 4): Won by 24 seconds in a course-record 15:18.2.

* Bull Run Invitational at Hereford (Oct. 11): Won by 14 seconds in 16:48.

* MVAL Antietam Championships at Woodsboro Park (Oct. 17): Rebounded from an early wrong turn to win by 21 seconds in 16:36.3.

* Washington County Championships at South Hagerstown (Oct. 25): Won by 21 seconds in a course-record 15:33.3.

* Maryland 1A West Championships at Williamsport (Oct. 30): Won by 22 seconds in a course-record 15:49.8.

"Overall, I guess I can call it a good year," Lilley said. "But I was never really satisfied."

His final race of the year on Nov. 8 has something to do with his disappointment. Lilley placed third at the Maryland Class 1A state championships -- a race he knows he should have won.

He could blame many outside factors, such as an infected plantar wart on his heel that he'd kept a secret. But he won't.

"I don't know what happened," he said. "I put so much pressure on myself to win it, and I just didn't win it. I focused on it all season and thought I'd have no problem winning it. But I didn't win it. It just wasn't my day. Too bad my bad day had to be at states."

Win or lose, though, that race wasn't going to define Michael Lilley.

He's already a four-time state champ in track with two more seasons left this school year. From there, he plans to run in college and beyond.

"I still have a lot to accomplish in the future," Lilley said.

"There are many, many more races to come in his life," Williamsport coach Randy Buchman said. "He's entirely sold out to the inner core of his being -- he bleeds running."

Joining Lilley on the All-Area First Team are:

Brandon Doughty, So., Jefferson

Doughty placed third in the West Virginia AAA Region II meet and 10th at the state championships.

Naseem Haje, Sr., Williamsport

Haje placed second in the Maryland 1A West meet and fourth at the state championships.

Cory Hampshire, Sr. Jefferson

Hampshire capped his stellar season by winning his fourth straight West Virginia AAA Region II title and placing second at the state meet.

Neb Osman, Jr., Mercersburg

Osman posted the area's top time on a 3.1-mile course this fall, placing second in 15:52 at the Mid-Atlantic Prep League championships.

Lenny Roach, Sr., Berkeley Springs

The area's lone state champion dominated at the West Virginia AA-A meet, winning the title by 32 seconds.

David Wilson, Jr., Smithsburg

Wilson was the Maryland 1A state runner-up, one week after placing third in the West region.

All-Area Second Team



David Eubanks, Sr., Chambersburg

Kory Farmer, Sr., Jefferson

Rio Ferrario, Sr., Williamsport

John Mundey, Jr., Berkeley Springs

Zack Rotz, Sr., Chambersburg

Jared Wilson, Sr., Chambersburg

Jake Wise, So., Berkeley Springs

All-Washington County First Team



Michael Lilley, Sr., Williamsport

Lilley placed first in the county, first in the MVAL Antietam, first in Maryland 1A West and third at 1A states.

David Wilson, Jr., Smithsburg

Wilson placed second in the county, third in the MVAL Antietam, third in Maryland 1A West and second at 1A states.

Naseem Haje, Sr., Williamsport

Haje placed third in the county, second in the MVAL Antietam, second in Maryland 1A West and fourth at 1A states.

Cory Horton, Sr., Clear Spring

Horton placed fourth in the county, fourth in the MVAL Antietam, 13th in Maryland 1A West and 37th at 1A states.

Rio Ferrario, Sr., Williamsport

Ferrario placed fifth in the county, fifth in the MVAL Antietam, eighth in Maryland 1A West and 16th at 1A states.

Nathan Ober, Sr., North Hagerstown

Ober placed sixth in the county, 12th in the MVAL Piedmont and 45th in Maryland 2A West.

Jordan Acton, Sr., Boonsboro

Acton placed seventh in the county, eighth in the MVAL Antietam, 18th in Maryland 1A West and 43rd at 1A states.

All-Washington County Second Team



Jacob Shriver, Jr., Smithsburg

Zach Cross, Sr., Smithsburg

Jesse Buchman, Sr., Williamsport

Evan Moser, So., Boonsboro

Nathanial Clark, Sr., Williamsport

Brandon Mauck, Sr., South Hagerstown

Ben Kofoet, Jr., North Hagerstown

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