Georgetown Prep senior Steven Duplinsky, a two-time All-Met, will once again lead the Little Hoyas in cross-country -- after returning from his work as a triathlete. Duplinsky won the junior men's division at the International Triathlon Union Gamagori World Championships in Japan, over the weekend, where he competed on the U.S. team. Duplinsky topped a field of 70 with a time of 55 minutes 8 seconds in the event, which included a .75-kilometer swim, a 20-kilometer bike race and a five-kilometer run. . . .

A year after the Eleanor Roosevelt girls ended a 16-year state-championship drought for Prince George's County teams, its boys' team could contend this year with a strong returning group led by Mikias Gelagle and Kelli Thibou. A Prince George's County boys' team hasn't won a state cross-country title since Bowie won in 1984; Roosevelt was eighth last year. Broadneck, which won the title last year, will still be tough, though, with defending champ Matthew Centrowitz back as well as eighth-place finisher Matt Llano. . . .

Two area teams are ranked in the Nike Team Nationals preseason rankings, although none are from Maryland. Jefferson, which won the Virginia AAA title in 2004, is the top-rated team in the Southeast Region. Brentsville, the defending AA champion in Virginia, is ranked third. Jefferson also is ranked No. 13 in the country by Harrier magazine. . . .

In Virginia, Chantilly senior Brad Siragusa and Herndon junior Abe Dagnachew are the favorites in what should be a very competitive season in the AAA Northern Region. Washington-Lee senior Chris Tyson and West Springfield junior Mike Spooner should also contend.

-- Sean P. Flynn