Ocean City Today

Low spread between SD runners important

By Managing Editor, Lisa Capitelli | Sep 14, 2017

(Sept. 15, 2017) The Stephen Decatur boys’ and girls’ cross country teams both finished in third place during the five-school season opener last Wednesday in Ridgely, Maryland.

“The teams that were there are traditionally the stronger teams in the conference (Kent Island, North Caroline, Cambridge SD) so it was a good test early to see where we stand. I thought we did OK for the first meet of the season,” Decatur Coach Jody Stigler said. “One thing I liked in both the boys’ and girls’ races was that we had a low spread between runners one to five. We were the first girls’ team and the second boys’ team to have five runners in, which is important.”

Kent Island won the boys’ competition, scoring 31 points. North Caroline finished in second place with 66 points, followed by Decatur (78), Cambridge SD (107) and North Dorchester (113).

Senior Jack Reimer was the first Decatur runner to cross the finish line. He came in fifth place overall (18:30). Rounding out the top five Decatur finishers were sophomores Austin Cheynet (11th, 19:47), Sam Rakowski (19th, 20:48), freshman John James (21st, 21:07) and sophomore Richard Poist (22nd, 21:12).

“I was surprised by the boys and thought they exceeded my expectations,” Stigler said.

Kent Island took top honors in the girls’ competition, tallying 36 points. North Caroline placed second with 49 points, followed by Decatur (60), Cambridge SD (77) and North Dorchester (144).

Junior Kailey Andrews led the Lady Seahawks. She crossed the finish line ninth overall (23:45). Junior Dori Krasner (11th, 23:54), freshman Mary Mergott (12th, 24:27), junior Erica Hicks (13th, 24:28) and senior Laila Mirza (15th, 25:13) also scored points for Decatur.

“Our girls particularly had a really low spread which is good,” Stigler said. “I would have like to see our top runners a little closer to the front, but overall I though it went pretty well.

“Our bus showed up late so we did not have time to do a full course walk-through which I think made some of the girls hold back a little particularly in the beginning of the race,” Stigler added. “The course wasn’t marked that well so I think some of our girls were apprehensive to really run up front because they didn’t know where they were going.”

Decatur will host the next cross country meet, scheduled for Wednesday at 4 p.m., in Berlin.

“I think it is important to note that we have very young teams. There was only one senior boy in our top five and one senior girl in our top five,” Stigler said. “We lost some key contributors from last year, particularly the boys’ [team]. For many of these athletes it was their first race or their first race the team was really counting on them to perform. I think we definitely have room to improve and we will see that as the season goes on.”

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