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Athlete of the Week: DiPietro running, scoring for Owls

Westminster's Sam DiPietro, right, passes Century's Jacob Spera near the finish line of the boys race in the Crossfire Invitational cross country meet at Liberty High School in Eldersburg Tuesday, October 6, 2015.
Westminster's Sam DiPietro, right, passes Century's Jacob Spera near the finish line of the boys race in the Crossfire Invitational cross country meet at Liberty High School in Eldersburg Tuesday, October 6, 2015.(DYLAN SLAGLE/STAFF PHOTO / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Sam DiPietro plays two varsity sports at Westminster, and he recently shined in both of them on the same day.

The Owls junior participated in the cross country county meet and finished in ninth place, part of Westminster's championship performance. A few hours later, DiPietro joined the Owls' boys soccer team and scored a goal in its 6-0 playoff win over Poolesville at Ruby Field. DiPietro, the Times Athlete of the Week, chose soccer as his primary sport when the school year began, which means those practices take precedence over cross country should the two conflict.

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DiPietro said he has only had three official cross country practices because of the county rules, but that didn't stop him for excelling on a big stage lastThursday.

"It was a whirlwind of a day. I couldn't really focus at school," he said. "I went out there and threw down what I got, threw down a pretty good time for myself. Taking home the team title was the most important thing."

He was Westminster's second finisher at the county meet, running the race at McDaniel College in 17 minutes, 32 seconds. With senior Brad Arbaugh placing fifth, DiPietro and the Owls totaled 53 points to take their first county team title since 2003.

As soon as the Owls found out they had won the team title, about 20 minutes after the meet ended, DiPietro said he drove straight to Westminster to warm up for the soccer game. His teammates were excited for the opportunity, but perhaps only one of them was coming off a "runner's high" to get ready to play.

Boys soccer coach Bird Brown praised DiPietro's ability to create his own scoring chance in the Poolesville game, and the midfielder found the back of the net in the Class 3A West Section 1 quarterfinal victory.

"I made a chance for myself," DiPietro said, "and the hard work paid off."

The Owls then topped Urbana on the road, beating the Hawks in penalty kicks, to advance. Westminster's soccer playoff run continues tonight when the Owls face Oakdale in the sectional final.

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Honor Roll

CJ Goon, FSK football

Hannah Lyons, Liberty volleyball

Haleigh Moore, West. field hockey

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Shannon Snyder, SC girls soccer

Jacie Wood, Man Valley field hockey

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