For video from this race, click here.
An array of local runners put together strong performances Saturday at the Albemarle Invitational an annual cross country meet that always boasts a competitive field.
Western Albemarle senior Annie Taylor put together the most notable performance, winning the girls race’s individual title by nearly 10 full seconds with a clocking of 18:47.8 over Tuscarora freshman Emma Wolcott. Taylor’s tremendous race helped boost the Warriors to a sixth-place overall finish as a team, just three slots behind third place Albemarle.
The Patriots’ pack of freshmen had a big day on the course. Ninth-graders Kenzie Lloyd and Jenn Wendelken stepped up with 15th and 21st -place finishes respectively to pace Albemarle. Classmates Ryann Helmers and Gabriella Block finished in 28th and 38th respectively and sophomore Sydney Winterton rounded out the quintet with a 46th place clocking.
St. Anne’s-Belfield Maddie Hunter put together a strong outing with a seventh place finish overall as the junior wedged her way into a talented, deep top 10. Senior Chance Masloff of Western took 12th for the Warriors in a solid performance.
Monticello’s Laura Habermeyer took 26th overall while Renee Craft finished 33rd for the Mustangs, who took 11th as a team.
On the boys side, Albemarle’s boys took second overall behind champion Stone Bridge. Other local teams turned in solid performances too with Western in seventh and Fork Union in 13th. Woodberry finished 21st, Louisa 23rd and Monticello took 26th.
Individually, Western’s Gannon Willcutts battled Deep Run senior Matthew Novak for the top spot, with Novak edging Willcutts by a little more than one second at the end as Novak clocked a 15:44.70 to win the race. Albemarle senior Zach Gentry took fourth overall in the boys race while Fork Union’s Alex Lomong took fifth. Warren Riley Covert finished 13th for Charlottesville with Western’s Trevor Stutzman’s 14th-place time right behind him.
Rounding out Albemarle’s runner-up effort behind Gentry were Hunter Lund (37th), Thomas Jackson (44), Will Law (47) and Zach Mackenzie (55).
Cameron Finley’s 23rd place finish was Woodberry’s highest while teammate Robert Singleton checked in at 26th.