For the second year in a row, Mount St. Joseph went into the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association cross country championships with the inside track on winning the team title, only to get nipped at the tape.
Unbeaten in dual meets, the Gaels lost to Calvert Hall, 62-63, over Western Maryland's 3.1-mile course yesterday, having defeated the Cardinals head-to-head two weeks ago. Because this title meet constituted the tiebreaker in the event of a tie in the league point standings, Calvert Hall emerged as the A Conference champion.
The Gaels' Chris Wright won in 16 minutes, 28 seconds, three seconds ahead of Archbishop Spalding's Dusty Lieb. Calvert Hall had the better depth, however, its runners finishing 5-9-12-16-20.
Spalding won the B Conference title.
In public school, regional races yesterday, leading to the state meet at Hereford High Nov. 13:
Class 4A North: Tenke Zoltani set a course record 18: 59 over Herring Run's 5-K course while leading Dulaney's girls to a 1-4-7-8-9 finish and 29 points.
Dulaney's boys were just as strong, Aaron Reuwer (17: 30) and Bill Duffy (17: 33) leading a 1-2-6-7-8 parade and 24 points, ahead of Perry Hall (59) and Woodlawn (69). Last week, at the Baltimore County championships, Perry Hall edged Dulaney, 46-47.
Class 3A North: In Bel Air, Will Murdock (16: 38) ran off by himself to lead the host team to victory, a feat duplicated by Bel Air's girls. Franklin's Margo Becker (20: 42) won the girls title.
Class 3A East: At Centennial in Ellicott City, Mike Stycznski (16: 23), Steve Chu (16: 41) and Shane Stroup (16: 54) led a 1-2-3 charge for River Hill, which devastated the competition by scoring 17 points, a regional record low.
River Hill's girls, led by Lee McDuff (19: 50), also had their way, clipping Wilde Lake, 32-54. It was McDuff's second regional title.
Class 2A South: Mount Hebron's girls, with Kate Frande (19: 40) showing the way, took five of the first six spots to easily beat runner-up Centennial, 15-86, being awarded the minimum-possible team points despite a Howard runner, competing individually, finishing second.
Atholton nipped Centennial, 44-46, for the boys title, Hammond's Jim Rivas winning in 17: 12.
Class 1A Central: Also at Herring Run, Glenelg's girls took five of the first six places and easily beat Oakland Mills (53) and Brunswick (56) with its 19-point tally. Carrie Selmer of the victors and Danielle Stoddart of Oakland Mills dogged each others steps, Selmer prevailing by two seconds in 20: 42.
Glenelg's Jon Goldsmith (17: 06) and Brian Selmer (17: 29) went 1-2 in the boys race, but Oakland Mills won the team title, 30-45, by placing its five runners in the top nine.