Photos by Don Rich, Megan Clugh and Gayle Rich of the November 1 PIAA State Championships @ Hershey's Parkview Course
Most cross country teams are made up of athletes who began their athletic careers in other sports. But the Lewisburg girls definitely have those "other sports" very well covered. But despite the various athletic routes they took to reach the sport, each girl on this season's varsity now has one thing in common. They're runners first, and foremost.
Common sense says bison don't fly. But when they come in the shape of the renewed, refocused, and reawakened Carlisle High School cross country program, it sure is going to look like they can.
Natalie Bower, Sophia Ziemian and the North Allegheny boys had higher goals than their state meets delivered. They dealt with their days in different ways. But all are now focused on new goals - this season.
The 2008 All State Outdoor Cross Country Team was selected by a committee of the PTFCA on 11/6 taking into consideration honors won, quality and consistency of performance and head-to-head competition.
Emmaus girls return their entire top-5 from last year’s State Championship team, making them the clear favorite to be the first AAA girls’ team to win back-to-back titles since Hatboro-Horsham. But Cumberland Valley, Latrobe, Liberty and others may have something to say. Jess Cygan, Liberty, and Natalie Bower, Latrobe, headline returning individuals.
ALL PHOTOS, VIDEO INTERVIEWS, VIDEO RACE HIGHLIGHTS, SUMMARIES, AND RESULTS ON. A STORY OR TWO MORE COMING...
Upper Dublin is the AAA boys best shot at denying North Penn a 2nd straight XC title, but other teams are lurking. Perkiomen Valley senior Jimmy Tarsnane is the top-returner from last year with a 8th place finish. Brad Miles, a North Penn junior, has run a 15:24 5k and should have a shot of finishing in the top-3 as he leads North Penn on another quest to stand atop the podium.
A battle will be brewing at the front of the AA pack this year with last year’s state championship team returning a talented squad sans star Carly Seymour, and Lewisburg looking for a championship to call their own. Lauren Zarger, Harbor Creek, and never been out of the top four – and she's the top returner.
Joe Beveridge, Bishop McDevitt (Harrisburg), looks like a good candidate to defend his title. The team race is wide open, and not just because perennial power Scranton is now AAA. West Middlesex returns 5, Quaker Valley returns 6, General McLane returns 4 and last year’s champion, North East, returns 4.
The Emmaus girls' cross country team finished 2nd in 2006 before winning back-to-back AAA championships. The season in their own words.
There are returning champions, and open throwns up for grabs on the hills and thrills of the redesigned Hershey Parkview course – featuring the Aloha Hills of Mile 2 and the newly minted Poop-Out Hill of Mile 3.
Webster’s defines it as the practical knowledge, skill, or practice derived from direct observation of, or participation in, events or in a particular activity. We can be fairly sure Paul Vandegrift never met this Webster cat personally, but rest assured, the Upper Dublin coach is a huge proponent of the value of said experience after his team’s first-ever trip to the state cross country championships a year ago.
MileSplit US #13 North Penn, led by junior Brad Miles (PennTrackXC photo by Megan Clugh) overcame early season doubts and lofty expectations to claim its second straight PIAA Championship.
PennTrackXC correspondent Jayson Jackson did the text-back on the race progress to the PIAA announcer at the finish... and he walked away impressed with the impact of the Aloha Hills on the races...
It’s every cross country coach’s dream to have a runner start out, and continue to get stronger and faster over their 4-year career. After Perkiomen Valley's Jimmy “Tarzan” Tarsnane” ran a very impressive 16:47 at the PIAA District I Championships at Lehigh U his freshman year, his future looked bright indeed.
September 17, 2008 preview of the new PIAA Hershey Parkview State Championship course
We begin our third year of the PennTrackXC.com Top 10 - a poll of coaches from around the state to rank the top cross country team of the season. One poll is reserved for the five top AA schools, while the Top 10 reflects all PA schools, whether AA, AAA, public or private.
Hard training, a lean racing schedule, and smart coaching are the keys to the consistent success that Latrobe has enjoyed over the past three years. Arguably the most important factor is a group of talented runners coming together behind a common goal that they all aspire to achieve.
In 2006, two sophomores and four freshmen from Emmaus – with irreplaceable leadership from then-senior Beth Luff – nearly pulled off the upset of season-long favorite and senior-laden Radnor. 2007, with the two juniors and four sophomores coming more into their own, the race was their's from the beginning.
PIAA State Championships, AAA Boys
Intelligencer cross country notebook: Banner day, bright future for North Penn boys
Intelligencer cross country notebook: Big weekend for North Penn, Tennent, CB South, Wood
Joe Beveridge, Bishop McDevitt, Repeat AA Boys State Champion
Dan Wessner, Emmaus, Repeat AAA Girls Team State Champions
Jess Cygan, Liberty, AAA Girls State Champion
Brad Miles, North Penn, Repeat AAA Boys Team State Champions
PIAA State Championships, AAA Girls
PIAA State Championships, AA Girls
Sophia Ziemian, Lewisburg, 2008 AA Girls State Champion
Lindsay Graybill, Emmaus, 4th in AAA, Repeat AAA Team State Champions
Jimmy Tarsnane, Perkiomen Valley, 2008 AAA Boys State Champion
PIAA State Championships, AA Boys
Will Squier, Elk Lake, 2008 AA Boys Team State Champions
Central Cambria, Repeat AA Girls Team State Champions
Randy Wilson, Central Cambria, Repeat AA Girls Team State Champions
Meet Comment: PIAA State Championships 2008
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