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North's Ward turns final run into foot race despite throwing shoe

November 12, 2011|By ANDREW MASON | andrewm@herald-mail.com
  • North Hagerstown's Emily Ward races to a fourth-place finish in the Class 3A girls race Saturday.
By Joe Crocetta/Staff Photographer

PARKTON, Md. — Emily Ward looked like she’d been through the ringer when she crossed the finish line at the Maryland State Cross Country Championships at Hereford High School on Saturday.

The North Hagerstown sophomore was exhausted from the hilly 3-mile race, covered with mud from a late fall and, to top it off, she was missing a shoe.

“Someone stepped on the back of my shoe 800 meters in, and I lost it,” said Ward, who ran the final 2 1/2 miles without it. “It was painful. There were a lot of rocks, and it really, really hurt.”

She persevered to place fourth in the Class 3A girls race in 20:19.5 — the fastest time of the day among all Washington County girls at the meet.

“I don’t know, it was just mental toughness,” Ward said. “I just kept thinking about how much I wanted it and how this was states and this was the last race of my season, and I had to give it everything I had.”

Boonsboro junior Sarah Zielinski was the runner-up in the Class 1A girls race in 20:32.8. Perryville’s Jordan Dodson took the lead from her shortly into the final mile and pulled away to win in 19:55.8.

Zielinski said she knew Dodson would be dangerous.

“I could always feel her right behind me,” she said. “We went to the same camp over the summer at Slippery Rock, and I knew she was fast.

“I’m a little disappointed,” she added. “The goal was to win to help the team win.”

The Boonsboro girls had to settle for second, as Bohemia Manor beat them 53-69 for its fourth straight 1A team title.

Before the race, Boonsboro coach Becky Walter said that, on paper, her team should win.

“The Bohemia Manor girls all ran a lot faster than I expected,” Walter said. “But our girls all stepped it up and ran even a little faster than I expected. Bohemia Manor just knows how to show up and compete on this course.”

Still, it was the Boonsboro girls’ best team finish at states since they won the title in 1995. And it was worlds better than their 10th-place finish last year.

“Obviously, a win would have been nice,” Walter said. “But if you look at where we were last year and where we are now, it’s just a huge improvement. And I see us keeping the momentum going.

“The girls are all upset, but I have no complaints. This will leave them hungry for more.”

Kortney Cunningham (eighth, 21:40.7), Ella Hawkins (12th, 21:54.2) and Katie Rickerds (24th, 22:57.7) also earned top-25 medals for the Warriors, while Lauren Cronise (27th, 23:26.6) completed their scoring.

For Smithsburg, which finished eighth in the nine-team field, senior Lauren Johnson placed fifth in 21:04.3 — her second straight top-five finish at states.

“I’m very happy,” Johnson said. “I had a better time than last year, and I’m happy with my place. I couldn’t ask for a better season.”

In Class 3A, the North Hagerstown girls, led by Ward, finished 10th in the field 21 teams. Emily Simmons also earned a medal for the Hubs, placing 18th in 21:22.4.

Maryland State Championships
at Hereford High School
Winners and Washington County results
Class 1A girls
Teams: 1. Bohemia Manor 53; 2. Boonsboro 69; 8. Smithsburg 161.
Runners: 1. Jordan Dodson (Perryville) 19:55.8; 2. Sarah Zielinski (Bo) 20:32.8; 5. Lauren Johnson (Sm) 21:04.3; 8. Kortney Cunningham (Bo) 21:40.7; 12. Ella Hawkins (Bo) 21:54.2; 24. Katie Rickerds (Bo) 22:57.7; 27. Lauren Cronise (Bo) 23:26.6; 30. Kailey Stracka (Sm) 23:34.8; 36. Meghan Alves (Bo) 24:10.4; 44. Elisabeth Hines (Sm) 24:39.8; 49. Taylor Cline (Sm) 24:58.9; 51. Jenny Moore (Bo) 25:12.9; 52. Brittney DeHart (Sm) 25:23.8; 57. Emma Zahm (Sm) 25:46.7; 58. Jamie Scott (Sm) 25:50.8.

Class 2A girls
Team: 1. Century 112.
Runner: 1. Hannah Oneda (Winters Mill) 18:28.3.

Class 3A girls
Teams: 1. Hereford 48; 10. North Hagerstown 260.
Runners: 1. Emily Mulhern (Urbana) 19:53.3; 4. Emily Ward (NH) 20:19.5; 18. Emily Simmons (NH) 21:22.4; 71. Amanda Martin (NH) 23:02.2; 87. Allison Martin (NH) 23:22.9; 98. Brittany Appleby (NH) 23:43.5; 101. Caroline Wills (NH) 23:50.0; 117. Olivia Poholchuk (NH) 24:25.9.

Class 4A girls
Team: 1. Bethesda-Chevy Chase 103.
Runner: 1. Caroline Guiot (Whitman) 19:27.5.

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