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Long Black Train keeps rolling

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JF lady harriers tops in Region III

By Mike Forster

The long black train made a scheduled stop in Harrisonburg.

All aboard!

The train, otherwise known as the Jefferson Forest cross country team, was impressive, yet again.

The Lady Cavs took top honors in Region III last Tuesday, while the Cav guys placed second.

It was the fourth consecutive regional title for the lasses of Forest.

That long black train, plus another trio of county runners, therefore, is set to hit the state meet on Saturday, at Great Meadow.

Those other three harriers are Liberty’s Kennedy Flynn and Staunton River’s Stuart Robertson and David Barrett.

The silver medals came Bedford’s way.  JF’s Leigha Schimmoeller and SR’s Robertson nabbed second-place finishes.

Stuart cruised in at 15:58, just four seconds behind winner Daniel Richards, of Broadway. 

“I am ecstatic and very proud that I broke the 16-minute mark,” stated Robertson.  “My next goal is to place in the top 10 at States.”

It was difficult to tell if Robertson was happier for himself or for teammate Barrett.  “I am really glad he made it to States,” declared Robertson.  “It will be different going to States with a teammate who will also be competing.”  

Last year, Robertson brought along a teammate, but that was only for support and company.

“It’s been 11, or so years since we last had a dominant boy,” said Staunton River’s Joe Curcio.  “We felt that Stuart had a real shot at winning the meet.”

Meanwhile, Jefferson Forest Head Coach Jerome Loy was thrilled with his team’s performance.

“A 2-3-4 finish by the girls is pretty darn impressive,” said Loy of Schimmoeller, Hannah Owen and Mary Deis.  “The best in the last nine years.”

These JF teams are all about the depth.  

The sheer size of the team is pretty impressive.  When you realize that they can all put up solid times, you shake your head.

According to Loy, his eleventh-best boy actually finished in fourth place at a meet about a month ago.

That’s deep.

The other thing that is remarkable about the JF team is that many of the top performers have other sports in which they excel.

For instance, Deis is an excellent swimmer; Tyler Bullock is a ringer in soccer; Anna Carter is a hoopster and a soccer player.

Justin Resendes, who finished in ninth, was the top finisher for JF.  His specialty in track is the 880.  Here he is, turning in a top-ten performance at a significantly longer distance.

If you think there’s a chance that JF will let the foot off the gas pedal, think again.

The girls’ pre-race chant went:  “One, two, three...FOUR!”

That chant was to note the team’s target of a fourth straight regional crown.

Next year, that chant will get a syllable longer.

As Loy stated, “The l-o-n-g black train lives on.”

Boys top twenty

1 Richards, Daniel          10 Broadway                  15:54.00

2 Robertson, Stuart         11 Staunton River          15:58.00 

3 Bibler, Kyle              11 Rustburg High           16:06.00

4 Leffell, Nick             12 William Byrd            16:09.00

5 Bass, Hunter              11 Rustburg High           16:11.00

6 Ellis, Chris              11 Rockbridge                16:13.00

7 Nicely, Cimarron          10 Alleghany                 16:21.00

8 Orellana, Carlos          11 Spotswood            16:23.00

9 Resendes, Justin          12 Jefferson Forest         16:25.00

10 Keeley, Nick              11 Rockbridge             16:26.00

11 Thibodeaux, Alec          10 Fort Defiance            16:27.00

12 Kearney, Zack             12 

R.E. Lee           16:29.00

13 O’Connor, Kevin           11 William Byrd            16:29.00

14 McBane, Michael           10 Lord Botetourt           16:31.00

15 Barrett, David            10 Staunton River H       16:39.00

16 Jackson, Benjamin         11 Jefferson Forest         16:43.00

17 Barney, David                11

E.C. Glass High         16:49.00

18 Montgomery, Collin        10 E.C. Glass            16:49.00

19 Driscoll, Sean            12 Rockbridge            16:53.00

20 Bullock, Tyler            11 Jefferson Forest         16:55.00

Girls top twenty

1 Wheeler, Erin             12 Northside High          18:09.00

2 Schimmoeller, Leigha      12 Jefferson Forest         18:55.00

3 Owen, Hannah                 10

Jefferson Forest         19:17.00

4 Deis, Mary                 12 Jefferson Forest         19:25.00

5 McPhail, Darby                 9

William Byrd           19:39.00

6 Corbo, Allison            11 Broadway                  19:41.00

7 Zimmermann, Tabea         12 Harrisonburg             19:59.00

8 Rose, Maria               12 Harrisonburg             20:00.00

9 Flynn, Kennedy             9 Liberty         20:05.00

10 Shortell, Destin           9 Spotswood                20:06.00

11 Brown, Kaitlyn            11 Brookville             20:07.00

12 McCarron, Cathleen        12 Brookville             20:15.00

13 Barnes, Katie                 10

Wilson Memorial       20:20.00

14 Rawlings, Emily           10 Northside                20:24.00

15 Carter, Anna          11 Jefferson Forest         20:26.00

16 Vann, Katie               10 Jefferson Forest         20:31.00

17 Wilkerson, Carsen          9 Jefferson Forest         20:31.00

18 Orrison, Addie            10 Rockbridge             20:35.00

19 Capasso, Lauren            9 Turner            20:36.00

20 Evans, Jessica                11 

R.E. Lee           20:37.00