Plenty of locals headed to VHSL cross country state championship

The Cross Country postseason was in full swing between the Region B, Region II and Northwest Region championships the last two days crossing the span of local Group A, Group AA and Group AAA teams and individual qualifiers. It was a good day for Central Virginia as both the Western Albemarle boys and girls team advanced, and will be joined at The Plains for the VHSL Championship by the Fluvanna County girls, Albemarle girls and more than a fistful of individual runners.

Western and Fluvanna move through Region II

The Fluvanna girls were able to earn a second straight Jefferson District title last week, and got over a hurdle that stumped last year by earning a fourth place finish this week. But the Warriors came up big this go around to take second place led by Annie Taylor who took second overall with a time of 18:25, just 29 seconds behind James Woods’ Amber Hawkins.

Sarah Grupp was next across the line for the Warriors in 19th. The next three Western runners came through in a six second burst starting with Alice Duchame in 38th, Sohie Loman in 40th and Erica Grupp right behind in 42st.

The Flucos’ fourth place showing was led by JD champion Nicky Douma who came in fourth overall at 19:06. Devon Burger’s 11th place finish was huge too as she gave her team a pair of top-15 showings. Stephanie Bossong came across in 21st place. It was a nervous finish for Fluvanna after that with Peyton Olinger and Brooke Haslip coming to the rescue by finishing 55th and 69th to give the Flucos a 23-point edge over fifth place Brenstville.

Powhatan’s Rachel Byrd was the lone individual qualifier from the JD with a 6th place time.

On the boys side Western Albemarle slipped by Tuscarora by 13 points and just missed third place by one point as they benefitted from JD champ David Taylor taking third overall. After that Trevor Stutzman and Noah Oakland took respective 22nd and 24th place. Andrew DeJong then come through in 41st. Nathaniel Hashisaki rounded out the scoring with his 52nd place run.

Fluvanna senior Chris Markham took the final individual qualifying spot by finishing 15th.

Albemarle girls move on, boys just miss

It was practically a toss up at for the Northwest Region girls championship with just eight points separating top finisher Colonial Forge and third place Osbourn Park. But there in fourth to take the last team slot was Albemarle.

The Patriots started out strong with senior Alison Huschke taking fifth overall at 19:20. Olivia Lewis’s 24th place run put a pair of Albemarle runners in the top-25. Lauren Truwit crossed in 29th, just ahead of teammate Ciera Ulan in 30th. In 42nd was Kristen Smith giving the Patriots a healthy 38-point margin over fifth place Patriot High.

The Albemarle boys couldn’t have started off better with Ryan Thomas winning the individual title at 15:51. But the Patriots missed by nine points to take a state bid with Forest Park and Patriot take up the last two spots as both schools tied at 114.

Nelson and Madison send individuals to state final

The Mountaineer girls came  up just short from moving on as a team with a fifth place showing, but Katie Berry and Caitlin Shilan both will advance on their own thanks to respective eighth and 12th place runnings. Governors junior Ramona Bryant will also move on as she took 14th.

For the boys, James Ballowe from Nelson County was the only local boys runner move through as the junior took second at 16:52 to continue the Governors streak of individual state qualifiers in tact after the graduation of Miguel Zarate.