Sanderson's Philip Hathaway (right) fought his way to 17th place at Saturday's 4-A NCHSAA boys cross country state meet at Tanglewood. Hathaway was one of four Spartans to place in the Top 20, helping the squad capture the 4-A state championship.
Strength in numbersSpartans win 4-A state boys cross country title
As Sanderson's Patrick Crawford walked away from the finish line following Saturday's 4-A NCHSAA boys cross country state meet at Tanglewood— the seventh and final Spartan to finish — he looked to a friend and wanted to know the results.
Not his, but the team's.
"I don't care about how I did, how did the team do?" he said in the enervate voice you'd expect from someone who just ran all-out for five kilometers.
An hour later, at the championships' awards presentation. Crawford received an answer — the Spartans had no equal.
Sanderson's Mitchell Feldman (center) placed 13th in Saturday's 4-A Mideast Regional Cross Country meet in Cary, helping the Spartans to a second-place finish and a bid to states.
Mallory, Spartans state-bound
George finishes second;
Lady Wildcats nab fourth
A few hundred meters from the finish line of the biggest — and best — race of his life, Wakefield's Mitch Mallory tripped over his own two feet.
But the junior gathered himself —albeit spitting mad — and completed the race, placing fifth in Saturday's 4-A Mideast Regional Cross Country meet with a time of 15:58.23. His finish qualified him for next week's 4-A state championships in Winston-Salem — and he's the first runner to advance to the finals from Wakefield in at least six years, coach Wayne Dubnansky said.
"I tripped and fell on my way up the hill," Mallory shrugged afterward. "I just caught my own leg. I was in a bad mood coming up to the finish. I was pissed. I just wanted to get to the finish line as fast as I could."
Millbrook sophomore Samantha George captured first place in Tuesday's Cap-7 Conference Cross Country Championship, posting a time of 18:14.99. In addition to George's win, the Lady Wildcats also claimed the team title, tallying a score of 44.
take Cap-7 crowns
George repeats as girls' winner, posting a time of 18:14.99
Entering Tuesday's Cap-7 Conference girls cross country championship race at WakeMed Soccer Park , Millbrook sophomore Samantha George — last year's conference champion — and Wildcat coach Brian Schneidewind compiled a strategy.
It was simple plan, really.
George was to hang in the lead pack, and pull away late. A good plan — likely a winning plan, too, considering her success last year.
But the 10th-grader decided against it.
"My coach wanted me to stay with the next top girl and leave her at the hill," George said. "But I was feeling pretty good, so I decided to go early."
The result? George posted a remarkable time of 18:14.99 en route to her second consecutive title, besting second-place, Leesville Road's Lauren Strapp, by nearly 30 seconds.
The Sanderson and Millbrook girls cross country teams — as well as Broughton — are expected to be the leading contenders for the Cap-7 Conference title Oct. 20.
Cross Country teams battle for Cap-7 title Oct. 20
Ask around and you will find out pretty quickly league meets leading up to the Cap-7 Conference Cross Country Championships — scheduled Tuesday, Oct. 20, at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary — are basically just exhibitions.
While winning dual meets are good for building confidence, they don't carry much weight in standings. Why? Because there are none.
The championships are basically a final exam. How each program does in the conference comes down to this one day, and one race.
And today's finale won't be an easy one to pass.
Sanderson runners Philip Hathaway (left), Mitchell Feldman, Matt Schick and Ben Boyles helped the Spartans finish second — just one points behind Chapel Hill — in last weekend's Greensboro Invitational at Hagan Stone Park.
Sanderson boys XC snag second place
If and when the Sanderson boys cross country team advances to 4-A state meet later this fall, last weekend's second-place finish at the Greensboro Invitational at Hagan Stone Park could play a key factor.
Defeated by a single point by winner Chapel Hill — the Tigers posted a team score of 104 to Sanderson's 105 — the Spartans know one or two places can make all the difference.
Sanderson cross country coach Ashley Taylor knows her squad is disappointed, but the narrow defeat should give her squad the push it needs the final month of the season.
Sanderson's Allison (left) and Samantha Cook race to the finish line Sept. 16 against Millbrook.
Wildcats, Spartans spilt meet Sept. 16
Call it the calm before the storm.
With both squads holding out several runners in preparation of last week's Wolfpack Invitational, the Millbrook and Sanderson cross country squads split its Sept. 16 meet.
Led by Samantha and Allison Cook — the sisters finished first and second, respectively — the Lady Spartans recorded a 25-30 victory.
On the boys' side, Millbrook captured five of the top seven places, posting a 19-42 win.
Millbrook head coach Brian Schneidewind lauded his boys' performance as Richard Miller (18:04) and Paul Carr (18:11) took home first and second.
Spartans race Wildcats
Conference foes and Raleigh rivals Sanderson and Millbrook battled in cross country Sept. 16. For photos of the action, click on the photograph above.
Sanderson cross country runners (from left) Billy Fetzner, Andrew White, Ben Boyles, Matt Geisz, Mitchell Feldman, Philip Hathaway and Matt Schick combined to capture first place at UNC-Wilmington's Seahawk Invitational last weekend. With the win, the Spartans claimed No. 1 in the NCRUNNERS.COM Cross Country Coaches Poll this week.
Spartans shine at Seahawk Invitational
Area teams square off Saturday
at Wolfpack Invitation in Cary
Following last week's impressive first-place finish at the UNC-Wilmington's Seahawk Invitational, it seems incorrect to merely say the Sanderson boys cross country team is hitting its stride. Just check out the times the Spartans posted — they were going much faster than that.
With Matt Schick — who placed fifth overall with a time of 15:54.02 — leading the way, the Sanderson showcased its great depth as all seven Spartan runners placed in the top 108. And no one finished slower than 17:51.22.
Matt Geisz (13th place), Philip Hathaway (23rd), Mitchell Feldman (36th), Andrew White (48th), Ben Boyles (67th) and Billy Fetzner (108th) rounded out the Sanderson's lineup.
Sanderson cross country runners Philip Hathaway (from left), Mitchell Feldman, Matt Schick and Ben Boyles (behind Schick) all finished in the Top 7 of last week's meet against Wakefield.
in cross country
It is said there is strength in numbers, and as the Sanderson boys cross country team made the final turn toward the finish of last week's home meet against Wakefield, the Spartans looked plenty strong.
In a show of great camaraderie, the Spartans slowed their pace, waiting for their top seven runners to group together, and cross the finish line within three seconds of each other.
First, Ben Boyles crossed with a time of 18:10, then Matt Schick, Mitchell Feldman and Matt Geisz a second later, and soon thereafter Billy Fetzner, Andrew White and Philip Hathaway.
Wakefield's Blake Watkins broken up the string of Sanderson runners, finishing nine seconds later, with a time of 18:21.