This is the closest thing to a “Pre-Districts” Meet we will see this year. Expect some fast times this upcoming weekend. Carlisle is a fast course that brings teams from 6 states to compete.
Let’s first look at some of the top teams from outside of central PA. The boys and girls teams out of University High (Morgantown, WV) both placed 2nd at the PSU Spiked Shoe Invite in early September with the boys averaging 17:06 and the girls averaging 19:47 for 5k. The boys from Washingtonville, VA already have 4 runners under 17:00 and a 5th at 17:04. Their top runner, senior Thomas Garrison, won the Washingtonville Wizard Invite in 15:25. He ran 15:53 at Carlisle last year. The Cornwall, VA boys placed 2nd at the Washingtonville Wizard Invite. The Cornwall, VA girls won the Washington Wizard Invite scoring only 27 points. Another strong team out of VA are the Blacksburg High School (Blacksburg, VA) girls. They placed 1st out of 34 teams at the Knights Crossing XC Invite in Salem, VA in early September. The boys from Blacksburg placed 3rd out of 36 teams at the same meet. Northwood High School (Silver Spring, MD) boys won the Hood College HS Invite (24 teams competed) and had 8 runners under 17:41 with their top 2 running sub 16:00 and taking 1-2 overall. Rock Ridge High School (Ashburn, VA) girls won the Hood College HS Invite (20 teams competed). Lasalle College boys are coming off a win at the Briarwood Invite on 9/15. They scored only 44 points in a meet that included Twin Valley, who placed 6th. They are currently ranked the #1 team in the state by penntrackxc.com. The West Chester East girls finished 2nd at Briarwood and the WCE boys finished 4th. Some of the top District 6 teams will also be competing, specifically the Mifflin County boys and the State College boys and girls.
Now, for the district 3 preview…
Top Teams competing:
#3 Cedar Crest
#9 Cumberland Valley
#10 Manheim Township
AAA Boys – Team: 8 of the top 10 teams will be in competition. Teams within this grouping have been beating each other up during league and conference play. On Tuesday, prior to this meet, Chambersburg will compete against Carlisle and Warwick will compete against Manheim Township. This is the biggest week of the year to date and should shed some light on who the top teams in District 3 really are. Individuals: 9 of the top 10 current individuals, based on fastest 5k times this season, will be in competition. Manheim Township (Ian Miller and Evan Dorenkamp) and Warwick (Connor Shields and Noah Martin) each have two runners in the top 10. Mechanicsburg’s Brandon Knepper is coming off a victory at the Council Rock Invite on 9/22. Jack Wisner (Carlisle) won a head to head with Luke Klingenberg (Cumb Valley) during their conference meet. Chambersburg’s Trentin Overcash is coming off a strong performance at Ben Bloser on 9/15. The only non-senior in this group is Palmyra sophomore Jakolby Falkner who won the LVC Invite on 9/8.
#5 Cumberland Valley
#9 Manheim Township
AAA Girls – Team: 6 of the top 10 teams will be in competition. This is a great opportunity for teams on the fringe to break into the top 10. While Carlisle, Governor Mifflin, and Dallastown seem to be cementing themselves as 3 of the top 4 teams in the district, the next spot for state qualifying appears to be wide open. One team to watch will be Elizabethtown. Their top 3 are running really well and they have begun to get more production from their #4 and #5 runners during league competition. I expect a strong showing from them this weekend. Individuals: 9 of the top 10 current individuals, based on fastest 5k times this season, will be in competition. CD East (Makenna Krebs and Delaney Line) and Elizabethtown (Cat Shontz and Madeline Quinn) each have two runners inside the top 10. Emily Schuler (Dallastown) and Gwyneth Young (Cedar Crest) join Krebs as sub 19:00 runners this year. Sophi Toti (Carlisle), Faith Mark (Hershey), and Kiersten Lloyd (Red Lion) will also be competing. Will be interested to see if Carlisle’s Meg Lebo returns to competition this week. If so, Carlisle’s position as favorite to win the team competition is strengthened.
Top Teams competing:
#3 Boiling Springs
#4 Milton Hershey
#5 East Pennsboro
AA Boys – Team: The top 2 teams in District 3 will not be competing at Carlisle (Wyomissing and York Suburban). That said, the next best 4-5 teams will be competing. District 3 receives 3 team bids to states and all the players for that third spot will be racing in Carlisle. Individuals: 6 of the top 10 current individuals, based on fastest 5k times this season, will be in competition. Lancaster Mennonite senior Logan Horst has been running really well and won the Ben Bloser Invite on 9/15, running 16:18. The top freshman in District 3, Greencastle-Antrim’s Weber Long will be racing in Carlisle. Milton Hershey’s Gary Waters and Big Spring’s Ishmael Kirkwood will lead their prospective team’s. Boiling Springs has two runners in the top ten in soph Evan Kase and senior Gabe Tomblin. This should be a very close race between Boiling Springs and Milton Hershey.
#4 Boiling Springs
#5 Big Spring
AA Girls – Team: With Northern running at Paul Short, Donegal has a chance to show they belong in the #2 spot. Boiling Springs and Big Spring will also be competing for the right to be #2. Keep an eye out for the team from Gettysburg. The Gettysburg girls defeated York Suburban in a league meet on Tuesday, 22-33. Individuals: While Northern has 3 of the top 10 girls currently in District 3 AA we will still see 4 of the current top 10 racing in Carlisle. Those 4 include Taryn Parks (Greencastle-Antrim), Olivia McLain (Eastern York), Katelyn Deitrick (Bishop McDevitt), and Rachel Fernald (Donegal). Parks will be looking for her third individual title this month, having won PTXC10 and Ben Bloser by wide margins. Look for the junior to go sub 18:00 at Carlisle.
Top Teams competing:
A Boys – Team: “A” gets two teams into states from the district meet. Fairfield, Trinity, and Kutztown compete in what could give one team early confidence prior to the District Championship. Trinity makes their debut in the top 3 rankings for the first time this year and will be looking to move up another spot if they can defeat Fairfield. Individuals: Trinity senior Will Bucher is currently the #1 ranked competitor in A. Kutztown soph Mitchell Brett, Fairfield junior John Whitcomb, and Trinity senior Sam Predmore are also currently ranked inside the A top 10.
A Girls – Team: None of the current top 3 will be competing in Carlisle. Fairfield, Kutztown, and Annville-Cleona may be the three top “A” teams that will be racing. Individuals: Kutztown currently has 3 of the top 12 ranked runners in A. Kutztown is led by soph Erika Moriarty and senior Madison Keiser, both in the top 10 individual rankings. Freshman Sophia Arnold sits just outside the top 10 rankings. Fairfield will be led by junior Maddie Kay. Senior Mary Tshudy looks to lead Annville-Cleona.
District III Teams Competing at Carlisle
Annville-Cleona (Boys AA; Girls A)
Berks Catholic (AA)
Big Spring (AA) – #5 AA Girls Team
Bishop McDevitt (AA)
Boiling Springs (AA) – #3 AA Boys Team, #4 AA Girls Team
Carlisle (AAA) – #4 AAA Boys Team, #1 AAA Girls Team
Cedar Cliff (AAA)
Cedar Crest (AAA) – #2 AAA Boys Team
Central Dauphin (AAA)
Central Dauphin East (AAA)
Chambersburg (AAA) – #3 AAA Boys Team
Conestoga Valley (AAA)
Cumberland Valley (AAA) – #9 AAA Boys Team, #5 AAA Girls Team
Cumberland Valley Christian (A)
Dallastown (AAA) – #2 AAA Girls Team
Daniel Boone (AAA)
Donegal (AA) – #2 AA Girls Team
East Pennsboro (AA) – #5 AA Boys Team
Eastern York (AA)
Elizabethtown (AAA) – #6 AAA Girls Team
Fairfield (A) – #2 A Boys Team
Garden Spot (AAA)
Gettysburg (Boys AAA; Girls AA)
Hershey (AAA) – #7 AAA Boys Team, #4 AAA Girls Team
J.P McCaskey (AAA)
James Buchanan (AA)
Kutztown (A) – #3 A Boys Team
Lampeter Strasburg (AAA)
Lancaster Catholic (AA)
Lancaster Mennonite (AA)
Lower Dauphin (AAA)
Manheim Township (AAA) – #10 AAA Boys Team, #9 AAA Girls Team
Milton Hershey (AA) – #4 AA Boys Team
New Oxford (AAA)
Northern (AA) – #1 AA Girls Team – Not sure on this. May be at Paul Short
Palmyra (AAA) – #8 AAA Boys Team
Red Land (AAA)
Red Lion (AAA)
Trinity (Boys A; Girls AA)
Warwick (AAA) – #5 AAA Boys Team
West Perry (AA)
West York (AA)