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cross country 2 (1)Catoctin Girls’ Cross Country team set several new Catoctin High School (CHS) records and personal records during the Maryland State 2A Cross Country Meet at Hereford High School on Saturday, November 14, 2015. As a team, Catoctin came in third place, scoring 141 team points, among the 2A schools. This marked the best finish ever by Catoctin High School’s Girls’ Cross Country team. It also marked the first time Catoctin had three girls in the top twenty finishers at states, and the first time three girls have run under 21 minutes on the challenging Hereford cross country course.

At states, the top five finishers for each school are assigned points based on their individual running times on the course. A team’s number six and seven runners’ scores are figured in the event of a tie. The team with the lowest amount of points wins.

Catoctin’s Cross Country Coach Terri Gibbons said, “It’s based on who the top five are—that day. If someone doesn’t have a good day, that counts against you.” She added, “At Hereford, we ran a three-mile course with big hills. It’s a very difficult course.”

Coach Gibbons is known for motivational team taglines. This season’s team motto, “Rankings mean nothing and race day means everything!” was proven true, as reflected in race-day results at Hereford.

Julien Webster ran seventh place overall, with a time of 20:02.84. She is a junior at Catoctin and was Catoctin’s number one finisher at this state competition. She ran the fastest time in CHS school history that any girl from Catoctin has ever run on the Hereford course.

Bella Kreiner earned thirteenth place overall, with a time of 20:29.11, a new personal record on the course. A senior and team captain, she ran as number two for Catoctin on Saturday.

Lillie Perella earned nineteenth place overall, and also ran a new course personal record, with a time of 20:41.13. She was the number three runner for Catoctin at Hereford.

Catoctin’s powerful top three: Julien, Bella, and Lillie, had a phenomenal season. Coach Gibbons said, “Often times, the three of them crossed the finish line before most teams’ number two runner! At the county championship they were third, sixth, and seventh.”

Rachel Waldron placed forty-third overall at state and ran number four for Catoctin, with a time of 22:12.31. She ran a new course personal record, beating her time at a meet on the same course in September by over two minutes.

“22:12 is an impressive time on this hard course. She shaved over two minutes in a month and half. That is extremely impressive,” said Coach Gibbons.

Sienna Caselle earned eighty-second place overall, with a time of 23:41.82, a new course personal record for her. She ran the number five spot for Catoctin at states, with her first run under twenty-four minutes at Hereford.

Courtney Orndorff placed ninetieth, with a time of 24:18.02, also a new course personal record. She was the number six runner for Catoctin at Hereford.

Kia Braithwaite ran ninety-fourth place, a new course personal record time, earning the number seven spot for Catoctin on Saturday. She’s been anywhere from number four to number seven this year.

Seniors and team captains, Bella Kreiner and Maura Williams, gained and shared great work ethics as part of this team. About the team’s thoughts before the state meet, Bella said, “We felt pretty confident; we’ve been a strong team over the year. It’s all on attitude and the mental game… We encourage each other. We’ve been faster than we ever have before.”

Congratulations to Catoctin’s Boy’s Cross Country finishers. Paul Slotwinski finished fifteenth, his best state finish; and Keith Gasior ran a course personal best time. Special thanks to coaches Ryan Lenhart, Leah Stone, and Jami Campbell, who have helped tremendously this season.

Good luck to Julien Webster and Bella Kreiner, who will compete in New York at the Foot Locker Northeast Regional Cross Country Championship that takes place while this newspaper is at press.

Congratulations Catoctin Cross Country for a great season!

catoctin cross country (2)

Pictured from left are Coach Ryan Lenhart, Coach Leah Stone, Kia Braithwaite, Rachel Waldron, Sienna Caselle, Bella Kreiner, Courtney Orndorff, Julien Webster, Lillie Perella, and Coach Terri Gibbons.

Cross Country pic -go with article by AshleyAshley McGlaughlin

On November 8, 2014, Catoctin High’s Cross Country team competed for the 2A State Cross Country Championships at Hereford High School, near northern Baltimore County. The sheer determination, love of the sport, and countless hours practice led the Catoctin Boys’ Cross Country Team to win states for the third year in a row.

“It was perfect cross country weather, low 50s with a little bit of wind,” said Coach Terri Gibbons. It wasn’t just the nice weather that aided this group of young men to win this three-mile race.

Throughout the months of training—beginning in August and ending in November—this team practiced every day for two hours, some staying longer just to help each other out. Running next to a group of people every day really makes a team grow strong.

“A lot of it was just how much of a family we are. At the end of the day, at race time, it’s good to know that the person you’re standing next to has your back just as much as you have theirs,” said Patrick Van Der Cruyssen, who placed fifth in the championship.

Coaches and families were very proud. “They all work hard all the time. The boys team does a very phenomenal job of working together and pumping each other up,” said Coach Gibbons. Winning states not only brings them victory, it gives each team member a feeling of accomplishment, achieved from all of the training and dedication, which will only help them with their future goals.

Zach Gascho, who came in first place, winning the overall championship, said, “I think that all the training that our team has done extremely helped us. We got some great workouts in over the season that I think made us prepared for states. Running has given me a work ethic that makes me set higher goals for myself, and I make sure to work every day to achieve those goals and I plan to continue using this throughout my life.”

Not only did the boys cross country team succeed, the Catoctin Girls’ Cross Country Team also did a phenomenal job in the race, placing seventh overall.

“The girls also do a tremendous job of working together. They do this thing called “little sister, big sister,” where upper classmen and lower classmen have an exchange of gifts once in a while—they even give each other motivational quotes,” said Coach Terri Gibbons.

Even being injured, many players have kept a positive mindset. Sophomore cross country runner, Lilie Perella, said “…all I can hope for is to be injury free next year and just train my butt off for states. Last year, my freshman year was better than this year. I want to make my junior and senior year count.”

Girls who qualified in the 2A Cross Country State Championships: Bella Kreiner, Molly Janc, Julien Webster, Lillie Perella, Sienna Caselle, Courtney Orndorff, Hannah Romsburg.

Boys who qualified in the 2A Cross Country State Championships: Zach Gascho, Patrick Van Der Cruyssen, Demetrius Patterson, Paul Slotwinski, Eric Myers, Andrew Douwes, Keith Gasior.