PARKTON, Md. — Midway through her Maryland 4A cross-country championship Saturday morning, Bethesda-Chevy Chase’s Caroline Beakes noticed the pace slowing. That’s when she decided to make her move at Hereford High.
The sophomore separated herself from the pack about a mile and a half into the three-mile race to win the individual championship with a time of 19 minutes 17.4 seconds and help the Barons earn their second straight 4A title.
“I just tried to maintain the lead and make it greater on the dip and continuing throughout the rest of it,” Beakes said, referring to the infamous ravine runners must traverse twice during the race. “People were slowing down, and I felt pretty good out there, so I decided to push the pace a little bit so it wouldn’t give them as much of a chance to recover.”
As a team, Bethesda-Chevy Chase was led by Beakes and sophomore Nora McUmber, who finished third with a time of 19:28.1 seconds. The Barons ended the race with 67 points, 36 better than second-place Quince Orchard and 52 points ahead of third-place Broadneck.
In the boys’ 4A race, Clarksburg’s Will Bertrand ran the fourth-fastest time in course history, taking first place with a blistering time of 16:02.7 seconds.
“Definitely after my season, I’ve had a lot of those big lonely races. It didn’t really take too much extra effort. It definitely would have been better to have someone with me to push it, but I’ve gotten used to it,” Bertrand said.
Finishing second behind Bertrand was Severna Park’s Ryan Forsyth, who lost his right shoe in a pileup 100 yards into the race and ran with just one shoe for the remainder of the course. Forsyth’s second-place finish helped the Falcons earn their first 4A cross-country championship in school history with a point total of 47, ahead of second-place Walter Johnson (93) and Wootton (150).
“Going down the dip it really hurt, that pounding. But it’s worth it. I needed to do it, and now it’s feeling real good,” Forsyth said. “My right quad was just burning the whole race but that’s what you got to do. You got to make sacrifices.”
Annapolis’s Harry Bullen fought off Danny Rau of Howard to win the boys’ 3A individual title with a time of 16:19.5 seconds. Reservoir won its first ever cross-country title in the girls’ 3A race, ahead of Centennial and Urbana, despite not placing a single runner in the top five.
Calvert handily won the girls’ 2A championship with 57 points, 44 points ahead of second-place Oakland Mills, which was paced by top individual finisher Brit Lang, who won with a time of 19:21.8 seconds.