DELCO Championships - Meet Preview
-By Bill Coren (Strath Haven girls' coach)
DELCO CHAMPS!! Sponsored by the DELCO RRC---SATURDAY 10-7-2017 Rose Tree Park 43rd year!!!
BOYS NOVICE 1:30 GIRLS JV 2:05 BOYS JV 2:45 GIRLS V 3:25 BOYS V 4:00
GIRLS TEAM PREVIEW -- For the past 5 years CARDINAL O'HARA and STRATH HAVEN have battled it out for the 1st and 2nd place plaques. For the past 3 years OHARA has claimed the title(and of course last year they also won the AAA STATE CHAMPIONSHIP). Once again OHARA is the favorite this year with Strath Haven having an outside shot at upsetting them! By the way, Haverford is pretty deep and may give Strath Haven a race!
INDIVIDUAL PREVIEW-The TOP 20 girls all get plaques!!! The TOP 7 finishers will likely be "Delaware County Daily Times 1st Team All-Delco". The most likely finishers for TOP 7 are Liz Mancini(OH)(12)(2nd 2016 7th 2015 2nd 2014)-Eleanor Mancini(OH)(12)(5th 2016 16th 2015. 8th 2014)-Taylor Barkdoll(SHAV)(12)(11th 2016 11th 2015. 15th 2014). It's so much fun when your top XC girls are Seniors and not!!! Freshmen(showing coaching matters at least a little)-Christine Mancini(OH)(11)(21st 2016)-Caitlin Jorgensen(EA)(11)(7th 2016.22nd 2015)-Jamie Green(RID)(12)(3rd 2016 4th 2015 22nd 2014)-Katie Till(OH)(11)(19th 2016). Notice 4 of the TOP 7 are OHARA girls!!
*PREDICTION*-Yes OHARA's top 4 will likely be 1,2,4,7. Depending on where their 5th finishes will determine whether Strath Haven has any real shot! CARDINAL OHARA's frontrunners are too strong and they win the DELCO championship for the 4th year in a row!--As for the DELCO individual champion, one of the Senior Mancini sisters(OH) will be victorious as they are running awesome this season! I truly like all 3 of the sisters, but I have to make Liz Mancini a slight favorite over her twin sister Eleanor!!
The Cardinal O'Hara boys wight year stranglehold on the DELCO title is in grave danger this weekend. The Lions, who have won the county championship every season since 2008 may not have the horses to keep up with an upstart Penncrest team.
Penncrest was the last team to knock off O'Hara in that 2008 season, led by Nick Bonaventure. Up front, Penncrest has the heavy individual favorite in Avery Lederer, who has been on a tear this season winning at Northampton as well as his home invitational. Justin Senackerib and Patrick Theveny will be other crucial pieces to the Penncrest equation if they want the title.
The best threats to Lederer's individual title bid are Ridley's Zack Forney, Episcopal Academy's Elias Lindgren, and Msgr. Bonner & Abp. Prendie's Anthony Harper. Forney has earned three top five finishes this season, including a 16:07 for fifth in the White Race at Paul Short last Friday. Lindgren won the Challenge Race at Briarwood and has proven that he is capable of a big race at Rose Tree. Harper won at Upper Darby to start his season and also placed inside the top ten at Briarwood and Foundation.
While Penncrest are the favorites, you can't count out O'Hara, which may find the depth to pull it out after all. Strath Haven, Haverford, Radnor, and Garnet Valley are other teams looking to get in the mix.
-By Dan Beck
The reigning AAA state champs from Cardinal O'Hara will look for yet another DELCO title on Saturday. Up front, they boast the heavy individual favorites in PA#5 Elizabeth Mancini and PA#11 Eleanor Mancini. Look for those two to work together up front and push for the title, which former O'Hara runner Olivia Arizin won the past two years.
Strath Haven's Taylor Barkdoll has looked strong so far this season, placing third at Spiked Shoe in Maryland and running 19:30 at Paul Short last week. Episcopal's Caitlin Jorgensen, Ridley's Jamie Green, and Radnor's Caroline Ditrolio all posted strong times at Paul Short as well last week and could find themselves in amongst the top ten on Saturday.
We can't count out the Sacred Heart girls, led by Emma Seifried, a three-time District 1-1A champ. Along with Kayleigh Doyle, Hannah Seifried, and Chiara O'Keefe, Sacred Heart should have a few up near the top.
Msgr. Bonner & Abp. Prendie's Jenna Rastatter was 36th last year, but is already looking much stronger this season. Keep an eye on the senior Saturday. After Barkdoll, Strath Haven's Olivia Malley and Ava Crawford will fight for spots inside the top ten. Epsicopal's Jillian Rotman and Jill McEntee will make a strong 2-3 punch after Jorgensen.
The O'Hara girls will go for their fourth DELCO title in a row, while Strath Haven will look to take back the county's team crown. Radnor, Upper Darby, and Garnet Valley are among the others teams that could make some noise come Saturday.