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Hernando gets chance to shine

Last week's Gulf Coast Conference championships easily belonged to Lecanto High's boys, and Hernando High coach Ernie Chatman fully expects next's Class 4A, Region II meet to be dominated by the nationally ranked Panthers from Citrus County.

But with Lecanto running in its own district championship meet in Inverness, Saturday presented runners from Hernando County their chance to shine.

Hernando's boys team and Central's No.

1 individual runner, Joe O'Donnell, took full advantage of that opportunity during the 4A-District 4 championships at Central.

Hernando won its third district team title in four years, scoring 33 points to easily beat defending district champion River Ridge (60) and third-place Central (69) in a 10-school field.

Individual runner-up O'Donnell finished his 3-mile home course in 16 minutes, 7 seconds _ 13 seconds behind winner Arik Chellew of River Ridge.

Hernando had all of its top five runners place in the top 10, led by third-place Shawnn O'Connor (16:25). Philip Borozny was fifth in 16:33, followed by Jonathan Britton (sixth, 16:36), Jay Gregory (ninth, 16:47) and Andrew Malcolm (10th, 16:54).

Hernando's Gulf Coast Conference-champion girls scored 53 to finish second to St. Petersburg Lakewood, last season's district champion and 3A state champion. Lakewood, with five runners finishing among the top 11, scored 36. Central's girls were fifth with 127.

The top six boys and girls teams from the district meet advance to the region meet, where 4A state-meet berths are at stake.

River Ridge's Jacki Waller easily won the girls meet, using a fast start to propel her to an 11:59 finish in the 2-miler and a 59-second victory over runner-up Emily Saunders of Lakewood.

Though River Ridge standout Chris Hannon was slowed to an 18th-place finish by a battle with bursitis and Central was without one of its two-fastest runners (Brandon Lauria, who was out of town but is expected back next week), Chatman was satisfied with the victory by Hernando's boys.

"This gives us some impetus to next week," Chatman, referring to next Saturday's region meet, "and hopefully on to state."

O'Donnell, too, hopes to carry the momentum of his runner-up district showing into the region championships.

"I definitely hope to do better each week," he said, "and hope my times keep going down."

The Hernando County girls contingent was led by third-place Cassie Nowicki of Hernando (13:05), fifth-place Brooke Bastien of Central (13:15), and Hernando teammates Vanessa Nowicki (sixth, 13:18) and Stephanie Poe (13:29).

District cross country

4A-4

AT CENTRAL H.S.

BOYS

Team results: 1. Hernando (Her) 33; 2. River Ridge (RR) 60; 3. Central (Cen) 69; 4. Zephyrhills (Z) 127; 5. Pasco (Pas) 144; 6. St. Petersburg Lakewood (Lw) 146; 7. Hudson (Hud); 8. Seminole Osceola 224; 9. Clearwater Central Catholic 224; NTS _ Land O'Lakes (LOL).

Individual results (3 miles): 1. Arik Chellew (RR) 15:54; 2. Joe O'Donnell (Cen) 16:07; 3. Shawnn O'Connor (Her) 16:25; 4. Hichan Mahjoubi (Lw) 16:27; 5. Philip Borozny (Her) 16:33; 6. Jonathan Britton (Her) 16:33; 7. Mike Dorkowski (RR) 16:39; 8. Chris Follett (Hud) 16:45; 9. Jay Gregory (Her) 16:47; 10. Andrew Malcolm (Her) 16:54; 11. Ian Doyle (RR) 17:01; 12. Will Staples (Z) 17:08; 13. Andy Cappiello (Cen) 17:11; 14. Akindeji Hill (Cen) 17:18; 15. Brian Wood (Z) 17:20; 16. Kevin Barry (Z) 17:20; 17. Kevin Scott (Pas) 17:24; 18. Chris Hannon (RR) 17:27; 19. Scott Puttre (Cen) 17:30; 20. Lee Stephens (LOL) 17:37.

GIRLS

Team results: 1. St. Petersburg Lakewood (Lw) 36; 2. Hernando (Her) 53; 3. River Ridge (RR) 67; 4. Clearwater Central Catholic (CCC) 104; 5. Central (Cen) 127; 6. Hudson (Hud) 140; NTS Pasco, Land O'Lakes, Zephyrhills.

Individual results (2 miles): 1. Jacki Waller (RR) 11:59; 2. Emily Saunders (Lw) 12:58; 3. Cassie Nowicki (Her) 13:05; 4. Heather Levering (Lw) 13:07; 5. Brooke Bastien (Cen) 13:15; 6. Vanessa Nowicki (Her) 13:18; 7. Stephanie Poe (Her) 13:29; 8. Carnie Wilson (CCC) 13:30; 9. Chastity Ott (Lw) 13:32; 10. Diana Biniasz (Lw) 13:44; 11. Courtney Gandy (Lw) 13:52; 12. Jamie Leonard (RR) 13:53; 13. Michelle Campbell (Hud) 13:57; 14. Allison Proctor (RR) 13:59; 15. Leigh Ann Letvin (RR) 14:05; 16. Louise Van Loyen (Lw) 14:07; 17. Loretta Lambright (Her) 14:08; 18. Shannon Ackerman (Cen) 14:09; 19. Colleen McBride (CCC) 14:12; 20. Erin Chatman (Her) 14:13.

4A-3

AT WHISPERING PINES PARK

BOYS

Team results: 1. Lecanto (Lec) 15; 2. Starke Bradford (Brad) 85; 3. Citrus (Cit) 128; 4. Gainesville Eastside (East) 152; 5. Deltona Pine Ridge (PR) 157; 6. Port Orange Atlantic (Atl) 166; 7. South Lake (SL) 197; 8. Alachua Santa Fe (SF) 206; 9. Eustis (Eus) 211; 10. North Marion (NM) 246; 11. Crystal River (CR) 256; 12. Interlachen (Int) 280; 13. South Sumter (SS) 375.

Individual results (3 miles): 1. Keith Gordon (Lec) 15:18; 2. Sean McManus (Lec) 15:21; 3. Jeremy Edge (Lec) 15:34; 4. Adam Spate (Lec) 15:39; 5. Gary Plutta (Lec) 15:40; 6. Derek Ellis (Lec) 15:49; 7. Dave Gardner (PR) 15:57; 8. Dewitt Revels (Brad) 16:09; 9. Nick Oliver (PR) 16:11; 10. Travis Tatman (Lec) 16:36; 11. Christian Feldt (Cit) 16:39; 12. Donnie Groves (Brad) 16:56; 13. Josh Jett (SF) 17:16; 14. Phil Pautienus (SL) 17:19; 15. Raymond Knowles (Brad) 17:22; 16. Peter Neu (East) 17:23; 17. Brian Holmes (CR) 17:25; 18. Hogan Heidorn (SL) 17:26; 19. Clifford McCoy (Int) 17:29; 20. Johnny Tung (East) 17:29.

GIRLS

Team results: 1. Starke Bradford (Brad) 51; 2. Lecanto (Lec) 61; 3. Citrus (Cit) 92; 4. Deltona Pine Ridge (PR) 94; 5. Gainesville Eastside (East) 116; 6. Port Orange Atlantic (Atl) 157; 7. South Lake (SL) 170; 8. Crystal River (CR) 189; 9. South Sumter (SS) 235; 10. Eustis (Eus) 261. No team score _ Interlachen (Int), Alachua-Santa Fe (SF), North Marion (CM).

Individual results (2 miles): 1. Annice Williams (Brad) 12:24; 2. Emilie Ruetenik (Lec) 12:26; 3. Shameka Walker (Brad) 12:40; 4. Cindy Ketchum (Lec) 12:45; 5. Nola Ehrlund (NM) 12:56; 6. Erin Thomas (East) 13:03; 7. Amy Beams (Lec) 13:16; 8. Michelle Groves (Brad) 13:24; 9. Elisa Ginabreda (Cit) 13:33; 10. Nicole Wiedmann (East) 13:43; 12. Sharon Pautienus (SL) 13:46; 13. Dawn Coury (Atl) 13:48; 14. Jennifer Schleif (PR) 13:54; 15. Tonya Bradley (Int) 13:56; 16. Abby Ziegert (East) 13:58; 17. Kari Cassidy (Cit) 14:08; 18. Tosha Ingram (PR) 14:12; 19. Shana Burch (Brad) 14:24; 20. Liz Alamo (PR) 14:26.

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