Cross country: Sickles sweeps Mitchell Invitational
NEW PORT RICHEY — Sickles' improvement in the first three weeks of the season culminated with a sweep of Saturday's Mitchell Invitational as Abdin Fator won the boys' race, his second victory in as many weeks.
Fator crossed the line in 17 minutes, 8 seconds to lead the Gryphons (66 points) to a relatively easy team victory over second-place Osceola (99).
The senior has posted an average time of 16:32 for the 5,000-meter courses this season. Saturday's time was his slowest so far, as Starkey Park has little pavement and is mostly sand.
Anclote's Spencer Guerette (17:20) was second but was followed by another Sickles runner, senior David Piatt (17:30).
After winning last weekend's Zak Lukas Invitational in Brooksville, Nature Coast (106) took third as Cody Van Natter (17:37) finished seventh. The Sharks' Kevin Ciccone (17:59) took 14th, and James Harkless (18:11), who won last Saturday, was 16th.
Gulf's Nick Buliga (fourth, 17:31) was the other North Suncoast runner in the top five.
The Gryphons' girls victory came via their depth and a tiebreaker. Sickles (91 points) tied George Jenkins, but because Gryphons runner Taylor Richmond finished better than Jenkins' sixth runner, Sickles took the title.
Gryphons Abby Grant (20:50) and Kristin Glavan (21:18) placed in the top 10.
One week after finishing second at the Zak Lukas, Mitchell's Claudia Cancello (20:18) won her first cross country race. Teammate Emily Kerns (21:37) was 10th. Gulf's Kari Grippo (20:38) was second behind Cancello.
© 2014 Tampa Bay Times
At Starkey Park, New Port Richey
Boys team standings: 1. Sickles 66, 2. Osceola 99, 3. Nature Coast 106, 4. Wiregrass Ranch 119, 5. George Jenkins 160
Boys top individuals: 1. Abdin Fator, Sickles 17:08; 2. Spencer Guerette, Anclote 17:20; 3. David Piatt, Sickles 17:30; 4. Nick Buliga, Gulf 17:31; 5. Hunter McCann, Osceola 17:35; 6. Benjamin Hall, Wiregrass Ranch 17:36; 7. Cody Van Natter, Nature Coast 17:37; 8. Thomas Grzesiakowski, Osceola 17:40; 9. Trevor Quandt, Indian Rocks Christian 17:41; 10. Landon Schneider, George Jenkins 17:44
Girls team standings: 1. Sickles 91, 2. George Jenkins 91, 3. Nature Coast 120, 4. Largo 136, 5. Gulf 150
Girls top individuals: 1. Claudia Cancello, Mitchell 20:18; 2. Kari Grippo, Gulf 20:38; 3. Bobbi Labrant, Indian Rocks Christian 20:46; 4. Abby Grant, Sickles 20:50; 5. Alicia Konstantinovic, Largo 20:57; 6. Saphara Harrell, Clearwater Central Catholic 21:05; 7. Kristin Glavan, Sickles 21:18; 8. Marina Levine, Largo 21:29; 9. Tiana Newton, Springstead 21:32; 10. Emily Kerns, Mitchell 21:37
Game Mitchell falls in Crusader Clash final
TAMPA — Host Tampa Catholic survived a scare in the tournament final Saturday but beat Mitchell 25-16, 23-25, 15-9 to take its second straight Crusader Clash volleyball title. Shayna Filippelli, Lindsey Lane and Jessika Hester led Mitchell's second-game charge, but the host Crusaders took control in the deciding set. Lane finished with four kills and Keysha Pagan had eight digs.
Michael Hinman, Times correspondent