As expected, the Langley girls cross country wasted no time proving their dominance in Northern Virginia. And to nobody's surprise, senior Vicki Verinder led a 1-3-5-9-12 Saxons' showing on the Burke Lake Park three-mile course in the Northern Region Athletic Directors Association Meet.
Verinder's time of 17:40.1 placed her 11th on the all-time top Burke Lake performances by a girl. It was her best time on the course by nine seconds.
After Verinder stole the lead at two miles, teammates senior Jenny Pederson, freshman Erin Keogh, junior Jenny Montgomery, and Kelly O'Hara brought home the team championship by 36 points over Robinson. The Rams placed four girls in the top 20, as senior transfer student Jenny Bacon was second in 17:57.0.
For the boys, though, the individual and team competitons went to the wire. Jeff Koppie, a junior from Jefferson, outkicked Bruce Barnhill of Falls Church by five seconds in 15:14.
"Jeff's coming along," said Colonials Coach Betty Stegall. "He still doesn't have a lot of self-confidence. In fact, he came up to me after the race and said, 'Do you think I'll be able to repeat what I did?' "
The South Lakes boys edged out Annandale, with its depth, by 10 points, even though the Atoms' Cliff Holtz, Bill Boatright, and Steve Bolton finished 3-6-14. The Seahawks, however, had high enough finishes by Jorge Pardo (fourth), Sandy Sanford (eighth), Jeff Graves (15th), Chris Conboy (19th) and Rob Barnhart (20th) to clinch the team title.
During the week, while Holtz was nursing an ankle injury, Bolton led Annandale to a decisive victory over Stuart, 21-40. But Holtz was back to health last weekend in the Judges Meet at Handley, finishing second in a sprint to defending state champion Shannon McCarter of Stonewall Jackson with less than a quarter mile left.
Holtz led a group of McCarter, Barnhill (fourth), Jason Morgan of Handley (fifth), and John Stein of Woodbridge (third) for most of 2.75-mile course, pacing the Atoms second-place finish to Woodbridge with 86 points.
Said Holtz, "He (McCarter) beat me at the very end. We ran stride for stride. I've got to run out early because I don't have a very good kick. As a team, we did well. We're a rebuilding team this year."
The Fort Hunt girls defended their 1982 Judges Meet title, beating 10 teams on performances by placing Terri Snell (sixth), Meg Cercy (ninth), Sara Burke (11th), Kim Kraus (12th), and Chris Boska (13th). Tracy Bowers of Green Castle, Pa., won the individual honors.
In the Arlington County Meet, Jeff Gerber led for the entire race over the 5,000-meter course at Bluemont Park to boost Yorktown to a second-place showing 39 points behind O'Connell and one point ahead of Washington-Lee.
Gerber's time of 16:53 was 19 seconds faster than O'Connell's John Spadaro. But O'Connell filled in the third, fifth, sixth, and seventh positions to score a meet-low 24 points.
O'Connell's girls also won the team title, powered by a 3-4-5-6-8 finish for 26 points. Lisa Bell and Charlene Burstrom of Yorktown ran 1-2 as the Patriots placed second with 35 points.
There was reason to celebrate for the North Stafford girls team. Coach Beth Ray reported that her Wolverines won its seventh straight dual meet. In its first year of existence last year, the team was undefeated in six races. North Stafford beat James Monroe, 26-29, for this year's opening victory.