The Walter Johnson boys cross country team came up short in its bid for a fifth straight 4A state crown Saturday at Hereford High School in Parkton, but Montgomery County still walked away with three of the four 4A state championships.
The Bethesda-Chevy Chase girls captured two of those titles behind, once again, the running of sophomores Caroline Beakes and Nora McUmber, who captured first and third, respectively, in times of 19 minutes, 17.4 seconds and 19:23.0 to lead the Barons to a second straight team title, besting runner-up Quince Orchard, 67-103.
McUmber and Beakes snared first and second, respectively, at both the county and 4A West Region meets this fall as well.
“It's pretty exciting,” Barons coach Chad Young said. “I feel like we had a lot more pressure this year and with each race, when you're expected to win, if you come out and get second place, it's almost looked at like a failure when it's not at all. I think the girls did a great job of handling that pressure throughout the season and they were prepared today and they did their job today.”
Beakes, a newcomer to cross country this fall, and runner-up Sophie El Masry of Richard Montgomery separated from the front pack of runners around the Hereford soccer field that is located in the outskirts of the course. Then Beakes made her move for sole possession of first place to defeat El Masry by nearly six seconds.
“In the corn fields is where I kind of broke away from Sophie,” Beakes said. “It's exciting. I definitely wanted to win. I was going to try to get into the top three. That's always my goal. I was really happy with that.”
Also placing in the top 10 from the county were Winston Churchill's Lucy Srour (5th place, 19:55.1), Sherwood's Amanda Hayes-Puttfarken (6th, 20:00.2), Springbrook's Sydney Almeida (7th, 20:04.0) and Clarksburg's Lucie Noall (9th, 20:05.2) and Abbey Daley (10th, 20:05.4).
In similar fashion to Beakes, Clarksburg senior Will Bertrand completed his first cross country season with a state title in a blazing time of 16:02.7, the third fastest time in course history to cruise past runner-up Ryan Forsyth of Severna Park by 25.1 seconds.
“I was happy with my time; it was a good race,” Bertrand said. “I was really running for time. I really wanted to go low 16s, under 16 and I got close to that. I knew there were some people who were going to push me, but I really wanted to break away halfway through the race and take it from there.”
Joining Bertrand in the top 10 were Thomas S. Wootton's David Levine (5th, 16:42.6) and Josh Trzeciak (8th, 16:54.8), helping the Patriots claim third place.
The Walter Johnson boys fell second to Severna Park, 47-93, to break the team's four-year hold on the 4A state championship. The Falcons of Anne Arundel County had five runners place between second and 16th place; the Wildcats did not have a top 10 runner.
“I thought our boys ran tough today and Severna Park was just phenomenal,” Walter Johnson coach Thomas Martin said. “We tried to get our guys to make winning a state championship a goal and my boys did that and they worked as hard as they could toward that goal and came up a little short. I'm still very proud of them.”
4A Maryland State Cross Country championships
1. Will Bertrand (Clarksburg) 16:02.7; 2. Ryan Forsyth (Severna Park) 16:27.8; 3. Vincent Ciattei (Perry Hall) 16:40.6; 4. Jimmy Shipley (Severna Park) 16:40.9; 5. David Levine (Thomas S. Wootton) 16:42.6; 6. Chris Jones (North Point) 16:48.0; 7. Bobby Keim (North Point) 16:49.9; 8. Josh Trzeciak (Wootton) 16:54.8; 9. Brent Musselman (South River) 16:58.2; 10. Rhys Burgett (Severna Park) 16:58.4.
1. Severna Park 47; 2. Walter Johnson 93; 3. Thomas S. Wootton 150; 4. Sherwood 166; 5. North Point 185; 6. South River 230; 7(tie). Perry Hall, Walt Whitman 252; 9. Clarksburg 258; 10. Richard Montgomery 272.
1. Caroline Beakes (Bethesda-Chevy Chase) 19:17.4; 2. Sophie El Masry (Richard Montgomery) 19:23.0; 3. Nora McUmber (B-CC) 19:28.1; 4. Isabel Griffith (Dulaney) 19:41.4; 5. Lucy Sour (Winston Churchill) 19:55.1; 6. Amanda Hayes-Puttfarken (Sherwood) 20:00.2; 7. Sydney Almeida (Springbrook) 20:04.0; 8. Skylar Moore (Perry Hall) 20:04.1; 9. Lucie Noall (Clarksburg) 20:05.2; 10. Abbey Daley (Clarksburg) 20:05.4.
1. Bethesda-Chevy Chase 67; 2. Quince Orchard 103; 3. Broadneck 119; 4. Winston Churchill 149; 5. South River 199; 6. Walt Whitman 229; 7. Dulaney 237; 8. Thomas S. Wootton 240; 9. Severna Park 263; 10. Westminster 279.