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Lady Chargers win first Region A title

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Five MHS runners are All-Region

by Larry S. Chowning

The Middlesex High School girls cross-country team made school history on November 5 when it won the Region A team championship for the first time ever.

The Lady Chargers defeated defending Region A champion Lancaster by a score of 33 to 38. (Low score wins in cross country.)

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Whitney Spence (right) of Lancaster edged Melissa Hall (left) of Middlesex by 4 seconds to win the individual Region A championship. (Photo by Larry Chowning)
Washington & Lee finished third with 91 points; Mathews, fourth, 93; King William, fifth, 107; and Arcadia, sixth, 145.

Whitney Spence of Lancaster won the individual title, edging 2008 champion Melissa Hall of Middlesex. Last year, Hall broke the meet record with a time 19:47—a record she still holds. This year Hall finished with a 20:27 clocking, 4 seconds behind Spence.

Middlesex’s Olivia Cloud ran a personal best time (21:27) to capture third place. Cloud has come on strong this year after finishing 15th in region last year. MHS’s Rebecca Walker continued her strong season and finished fourth (21:49). 

The Lady Chargers’ next two runners were one of the keys to the team victory for MHS. Stephanie Hutton finished 12th (22:54) and Lindsay Harrow finished 14th (23:07). 

The top five runners for the Lady Chargers were named All-Region A. The top 15 runners make the elite squad.

Other Middlesex runners to finish were Lauren Beebe, who finished 39th (26:44), and Shannon Bristow, who placed 48th (28:50).

“This race truly reflected the team nature of cross-country,” said MHS coach Bill Murray. “It was the number five runner (Harrow) who won the championship for us.”

Harrow’s 23:07 finish—three minutes faster than she ran at the district meet on October 28 and her best time since she was a sophomore—produced the points needed to down Lancaster.

“It  did not hurt that the front end of the team took three of the first four places, but without the team anchors closing it out with All-Region performances, MHS would have had to settle for runner-up again,” said Murray.

“It will take that kind of performance again this weekend to improve on last year’s fifth place in the state meet,” said Murray.

The Lady Chargers will run in the State Group A championship meet at Great Meadows near Warrenton this Saturday, November, 14.

posted 11.18.2009

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