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Hernando girls stop Lecanto, repeat as GCC champions

The high school cross-country status quo held firm in the Gulf Coast Conference team title chase, as Hernando's girls successfully repeated as GCC winners Saturday and Lecanto's nationally ranked boys won with a perfect score of 15 for their third-consecutive conference championship.

Individually, the heirs apparent assumed took their rightful positions at McKethan Lake Park, where a pair of Lecanto High runners who each placed second last year won their own GCC crowns.

Sean McManus, runner-up to Hernando High's Eric Omdahl in 1993, won the 3-mile boys race in 15 minutes, 15 seconds, and Emilie Ruetenik, second to Hernando's Gina Bawden a season ago, was the girls winner with a 2-mile time of 12:05.

Hernando's girls team victory was buoyed by four runners placing fourth-through-seventh: Cassie Nowicki (12:21), Vanessa Nowicki (12:23), Loretta Lambright (12:44) and Stephanie Poe (12:51). Hernando's fifth runner, Melissa Hancock, was 12th in 13:43, and teammate Erin Chatman also earned all-conference recognition by placing 13th in 13:45. All had personal-best times.

"Basically, it was a two-team race for the top," said Hernando coach Scott Borgeson, who considered his Leopards underdogs. "We thought we had an outside chance, because the girls have worked really hard and continued to improve all year. Our three, four, five and six runners have been well as a pack, and they keep getting closer to the top two."

Hernando's victory over Lecanto was its first this season.

"We picked a good time," Borgeson said, "to come together."

Hernando's boys were second in the team standings with 53, followed by Central, Citrus, South Sumter and Crystal River.

Hernando's top five runners all earned all-conference honors by placing among the top 14 finishers _ Philip Borozny was ninth (16:15), Jonathan Britton 10th (16:21), Andrew Malcolm 13th (16:38) and Jay Gregory 14th (16:39) _ as did Central's 11th-place Brandon Lauria.

Waller, Krcmaric cruise in Sunshine

NEW PORT RICHEY _ Ridgewood's Matt Krcmaric and River Ridge's Jacki Waller cruised to easy victories in the Sunshine Athletic Conference meet at Ridgewood High.

The host Rams took both team titles.

Springstead placed fifth in the eight-team boys field and fifth among seven girls teams.

_ JOHN C. COTEY

Conference cross country

Gulf Coast Conference

AT McKETHAN LAKE PARK,

BROOKSVILLE

BOYS

Team results: 1. Lecanto (Lec) 15; 2. Hernando (Her) 53; 3. Central (Cen) 74; 4. Citrus (Cit) 103; 5. South Sumter 168; 6. Crystal River (CR) 231.

Individual results (3 miles; Top 14 earn all-conference recognition): 1. Sean McManus (Lec) 15:12; 2. Keith Gordon (Lec) 15:22; 3. Jeremy Edge (Lec) 15:27; 4. Adam Spate (Lec) 15:40; 5. Gary Plutta (Lec) 15:44; 6. Derek Ellis (Lec) 16:01; 7. Shawwn O'Connor (Her) 16:05; 8. Joe O'Donnell (Cen) 16:10; 9. Philip Borozny (Her) 16:15; 10. Jonathan Britton (Her) 15:21; 11. Brandon Lauria (Cen) 16:29; 12. Travis Tatman (Lec) 16:37; 13. Andrew Malcolm (Her) 16:39; 14. Jay Gregory (Her) 16:39; 15. Brian Holmes (CR) 16:53; 16. Christian Feldt (Cit) 16:59; 17. Andy Cappiello (Cen) 17:00; 18. Akindeji Hill (Cen) 17:27; 19. Jim Harrington (Cit) 17:33; 20. Scott Puttre (Cen) 17:38.

GIRLS

Team results: 1. Hernando (Her) 34; 2. Lecanto (Lec) 47; 3. Central (59); 4. Citrus (Cit) 92; 5. Crystal River 135; NTS _ South Sumter (SS).

Individual results (2 miles; Top 14 earn all-conference recognition): 1. Emilie Ruetenik (Lec) 12:05; 2. Cindy Ketchum (Lec) 12:12; 3. Brooke Bastien (Cen) 12:12; 4. Cassie Nowicki (Her) 12:21; 5. Vanessa Nowicki (Her) 12:23; 6. Loretta Lambright (Her) 12:44; 7. Stephanie Poe (Her) 12:51; 8. Elisa Ginabreda (Cit) 13:05; 9. Amy Beams (Lec) 13:07; 10. Kelly Hughes (Cen) 13:27; 11. Shannon Akerman (Cen) 13:31; 12. Melissa Hancock (Her) 13:43; 13. Erin Chatman (Her) 13:45; 14. Shannon Shepherd (Cen) 13:50; 15. Kari Cassidy (Cit) 13:52; 16. Tanya Jones (Lec) 14:19; 17. Leah Elkins (SS) 14:31; 18. Sarah Bedford (Cit) 14:34; 19. Felicia Munoz (Lec) 14:38; 20. Jessica Peterson (Her) 14:41.

Sunshine Athletic

Conference

AT RIDGEWOOD HIGH

BOYS

Team results: Ridgewood 33, River Ridge 76, Zephyrhills 96, Pasco 108, Springstead 119, Hudson 135, Gulf and Land O'Lakes NTS.

Individuals: 1. Krcmaric (RW) 15:24; 2. Chellew (RR) 15:34; 3. Finn (RW) 15;50; 4. Dorkowski (RR) 16:15; 5. Ceccarini (RW) 16:26; 6. Ledbetter (P) 16:30; 7. Staples (Z) 16:31; 8. Barry (Z) 16:42; 9. Boldt (S) 16:44; 10. Billy Wood (RW) 16:45; 11. Follett (H) 16:55; 12. Rauch (G) 16:55.3; 13. Brian Wood (Z) 16:55.6; 14. Sample (RW) 16:56; 15. DiFrank (S) 16:57; 16. Scott (P) 17:09; 17. Kunkel (LOL) 17:11; 18. Stephens (LOL) 17:14; 19. Brewer (G) 17:17; 20. Doyle (RR) 17:17.6.

GIRLS

Team results: Ridgewood 24, Gulf 41, River Ridge 65, Hudson 114, Springstead 145, Land O'Lakes 161, Zephyrhills NTS.

Individuals: 1. Waller (RR) 11:43; 2. Jones (RW) 11:57; 3. Robson (RW) 12:21; 4. Barndollar (RW) 12:44; 5. Cregan (G) 12:51; 6. Ramirez (RW) 12:54; 7. Gelder (G) 13:02; 8. Milla (G) 13:06; 9. Rodriguez (RW) 13:08; 10. Jezek (G) 13:13; 11. Just (G) 13:18; 12. Campbell (H) 13:21; 13. Letuin (RR) 13:26; 14. Titus (RW) 13:27; 15. Leonard (RR) 13:28; 16. Benson (LOL) 13:31; 17. Baldauff (RR) 13:39; 18. Masnussen (G) 13:45; 19. Proctor (RR) 13:53; 20. Leonard (H) 13:55.

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