Fast Com­pany

North Bay­side run­ners don’t win, but watch times drop at Tide­wa­ter Fall Clas­sic

Times-Record - - SPORTS - By WILLIAM HAUFE bhaufe@star­ Fol­low me on Twit­ter @Bil­l_Haufe. Email me at bhaufe@star­

SAL­IS­BURY — Sure, win­ning a big in­vi­ta­tional at the sea­son’s half­way point would have been nice.

But giv­ing chase against a large field has its ad­van­tages, espe­cially if it leads to a con­fer­ence or re­gional ti­tle later this year.

“I thought the rea­son that those three all PR’d to­day, and had the races that they had was be­cause they rose to the oc­ca­sion, which is what we were hop­ing they would do,” Cam­bridge-South Dorch­ester High head cross coun­try coach Sean Reincke said of Con­nor McCroy, Sarah Con­don, and Car­rie Price, who each clocked their best times of the sea­son Wed­nes­day, Oct. 3, at Win­ter Place Park dur­ing the 46th run­ning of the Tide­wa­ter Fall Clas­sic.

Con­don was run­ner-up in the girls’ race, clock­ing a ca­reer per­sonal-record time of 20 min­utes, 39.33 sec­onds — 38 sec­onds be­hind cham­pion He­lena Lee of North­west — while Price posted her best mark of the sea­son with her fifth­place 21:21.97.

McCroy du­eled North­west’s Na­hom Ftwi through the mid­dle stages of the 3.1mile course be­fore plac­ing third in the boys’ race with a new ca­reer-low 16:50.36. Austen Cave of Del­mar, Del., dom­i­nated the boys’ com­pe­ti­tion, fin­ish­ing in 15:50.72, while Ftwi was se­cond in 16:34.58.

“The big­gest prob­lem the past two years is I haven’t had any­body to chase,” McCroy said. “Un­til Bay­sides and re­gion­als, there’s not go­ing to be an­other race like this.”

Reincke and com­pany weren’t the only ones feel­ing good on this warm, sunny af­ter­noon

Kent Is­land first-year head coach Kris­ten Park watched her girls’ team fin­ish third — two points be­hind se­cond-place North­west — while the boys were also third, yet fin­ished with the same point to­tal (95) as se­cond-place Cape Hen­lopen, Del.

“We just wanted to have a good show­ing; kind of see how we stacked up with a larger re­gion,” said Park, her teams post­ing the high­est fin­ish of any Bay­side Con­fer­ence school in the boys’ and girls’ com­pe­ti­tions. “Those Delaware schools are al­ways strong and we wanted to be up there with them.”

North Bay­side schools did more than just keep up with North­west of Ger­man­town and Delaware’s Cape Hen­lopen in the girls’ race, plac­ing six in the top 10, and 10 in the top 15.

Lead­ing that string was Con­don, who took over se­cond place in the se­cond mile and main­tained that stand­ing the re­main­der of the course.

“Chas­ing some­one only makes you faster,” Con­don said. “It will give you more fuel to ac­tu­ally pass them. Some­times you might think that they’re ac­tu­ally go­ing slow, but it ends up that they weren’t, and then you PR.”

Price agreed with her team­mate.

“This race is a re­ally piv­otal mo­ment,” Price said. “One, it’s like that halfwaythrough-the-sea­son mark, and this race had a lot of good com­pe­ti­tion we won’t see again un­til the Bay­side. Plus this has al­ways been a real fast course for us. So this race is su­per im­por­tant be­cause we had some many peo­ple around us to race and ac­tu­ally get our time down, in­stead of just be­ing in no-man’s land. We had peo­ple to be en­gaged with the whole time.”

Fin­ish­ing between Con­don and Price were Kent Is­land’s Fiona Mul­li­gan and Queen Anne’s County’s Ju­lia Red­path, who placed third and fourth, re­spec­tively, in 20:51.89 and 20:55.93.

“Run­ning af­ter some­one def­i­nitely im­proves your time,” said Mul­li­gan, who watched team­mates Jules Biggam and Han­nah Claggett fin­ish in 13th and 14th place, re­spec­tively. “The last time I ran a 5k I think it was 22 some­thing and my time dropped by over a minute (to­day). So def­i­nitely hav­ing some­body to chase im­proves your time.”

Also crack­ing the top 15 on the girls’ side were North Caro­line’s Zoe Durner (sixth, 21:28.27) and Sierra Reynolds (10th, 22:04.07) and Queen Anne’s Maisie Mee­han (12th, 22:08.60) and fresh­man Made­lyn Toth (15th, 22:19.15).

Jia Yin Zheng was Kent Is­land’s fifth run­ner, fin­ish­ing 41st.

Queen Anne’s was fourth in the girls’ team stand­ings, with Grace Swee­tak (33rd) and Grace Suther­land (58th) round­ing out the top five.

While Kent Is­land’s boys, the eight-time de­fend­ing con­fer­ence cham­pion, grad­u­ated one of the pro­gram’s more sto­ried onetwo punches in mid­dle-dis­tance run­ning — Bran­don Ni­chols and Erick Sanchez — Park thinks the Bucs have an­other solid com­bi­na­tion de­vel­op­ing at the top in Isa­iah Schul­ties and Finn Walsh, who were the only other two run­ners from the North to crack the boys’ top 10 other than McCroy.

“I just look at them as the se­cond com­ing of Bran­don (Ni­chols) and (Erick) Sanchez,” Park said af­ter watch­ing Schul­ties and Walsh run per­sonal-record times yes­ter­day. “I thought we’d have such a gap and Finn has re­ally stepped it up this year. We’re happy to have a one-two punch again.”

Schul­ties fin­ished sixth in 17:03.58, while Walsh crossed the fin­ish line three places be­hind in 17:06.42.

“I think it’s re­ally im­por­tant to see where we stand on the Bay­side,” Schul­ties said. “Even though we’re not go­ing to be re­ally fac­ing them with big­ger events com­ing up, it’s nice to know like where we stand com­pared to other peo­ple.”

Walsh also liked Wed­nes­day’s added push.

“We’ve been to­gether for most of the sea­son and it’s usu­ally only been us push­ing each other,” Walsh said of reg­u­lar-sea­son meets. “So it’s great to have peo­ple that are faster than us to try and catch up to.”

Fol­low­ing Schul­ties and Walsh across the fin­ish line for Kent Is­land were Cade Don­nelly (17th), Sean Hobbs (28th) and Jack Pearse (35th).

Cam­bridge-SD’s boys had the se­cond best fin­ish among Bay­side schools, plac­ing sev­enth, with John Con­don (29th), Bryce Jones (40th), Sam Slacum (55) and Faizan Ahmed (92nd) com­plet­ing the top five.

Notes: The girls’ race had 178 run­ners, while the boys’ event had 250 . ... North­west won the boys’ team com­pe­ti­tion with 45 points, with Cape Hen­lopen tak­ing se­cond with 95. ...Cape Hen­lopen won the girls’ ti­tle, 20 points ahead of run­ner-up North­west.


North Caro­line’s Cody Groves heads to­ward the fin­ish line at Wed­nes­day’s 46th an­nual Tide­wa­ter Fall Clas­sic. Groves was the Bull­dogs’ top run­ner in the boys’ com­pe­ti­tion, fin­ish­ing 15th.


North Caro­line’s Zoe Durner heads for the fin­ish line Wed­nes­day on the way to a sixth-place fin­ish at the Tide­wa­ter Fall Clas­sic.

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