The scoop: There are 54 boys on the Mt. Hebron team and 20 are freshmen, which bodes well for the future.

"We are very excited about the team," said coach Todd DeCrispino. "We have a good mix of seniors through freshmen. We should be a very competitive team throughout the season."

Paul Ulrich's girls team is headed up by Yep, who is one of the county's best runners. The Vikings' top three athletes have been in the varsity top five their entire high school careers.

According to Ulrich, team members believe in each other and think of the 20-member team as a family.

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"The team is an outstanding group of young student-athletes dedicated to being competitive each meet and improving each time they race," he said.

Invitationals: Interstate Classic, South Carroll, Bull Run, Gunpowder Falls and Scorpion Crawl.


Boys to watch: Seniors Cameron Bowling, Kevin O'Hara and Sam Andrews; juniors Tom Brumbaugh, Connor Holley and Paul Kirk-Davidoff.

Girls to watch: Seniors Alyssa Hemler, Sarah Brand and Lara Celtnieks; junior Mackenzie Snyder; freshman Brit Lang.

The scoop: Small but mighty might define the Oakland Mills team, which has just 20 boys and 11 girls.

According to coach Phil Lang, the team's strength is its experience. Andrews, one of last season's top runners, is back, but his participation may be limited by commitments to the school's drama department.

"The boys look to be a close and deep group. The girls' team looks to be real strong upfront," Lang said.

Brit Lang, the coach's daughter, has years of running experience and will boost the girls squad.

A legitimate goal for both of the Scorpions teams is a top five finish at the state meet.

Invitationals: Adidas Cross Country Challenge (North Carolina), Bull Run and Scorpion Crawl.


Boys to watch: Seniors Adam Gartrell and Teddy LaFemina; junior Owen Pochettino.

Girls to watch: Seniors Cindy Alm and Amy Oliver; juniors Katie Wilson and Karli Smiraglia.

The scoop: The Gators' top three boys are very strong. If the next three or four runners have a good season, then Reservoir will be capable of surprising teams.

The Reservoir girls have a very good returning team. "Despite some injuries, the girls have depth and depth out to eight or nine runners," said coach Phil Rogers.