GMC runs at NJCAA Half Marathon Championships

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Just before the race begins.  Do not be fooled by the sun, it was cold.

On a very cool and windy Saturday morning, while most people were in bed, GMC freshmen John and Adam Dougherty were lining up for the start of the NJCAA Half Marathon hosted by South Plains College in Levelland, Texas.  The temperature at the start of the races was a balmy 31 degrees with wind constant around 20 miles per hour and gusting to the 30s.
The Dougherty’s competed in the National Championship and ran well.  The Adam led the way for the team with a time of 1:21:39 that was good enough for 46th place.  Brother John came in with a time of1:23:51which led to a 49th place finish.  Speaking of his race, Adam said “It was super cold and the wind was horrible.  But we persevered. “    John added “the scenery was really nice.  It was a really ‘cool’ experienced to come and run.”  Adam was the highest placed Division III runner and John was the second highest place.

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GMC Cross Country coach, Rob Sherwood added “I can not be more proud the team.  This was a little out of the comfort zone of Adam and John.  They can run this distance, but running it at race pace is different experience.”  With this race the GMC cross country season comes to an end for the 2015 season.  “We had a great season from individual finishes to the women’s team capturing the Region 17 Division III championship.  We hope to build off of this for next season.”  Sherwood wanted to add that “the ability to work with these kids made the season great.  We look forward to those who are returning, are excited about the new runners who will come next season, and are very grateful for those who will graduate and leave GMC.”

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A little more love from the Macon Telegraph

A brief summary of the State races for area teams can be found here.

I will only add a some to what the Telegraph wrote.  Congratulations to Coach Cranford and the Bleckley County team.  The boys finally broke through and not only won the individual race with Carl Ellis Corley (aka Scooter) winning the race, but as a team dominating the event.

Congratulations to Jones County girls as they finished 5th.  This caps a great career of Kate Boland in the HS ranks.  Word is she is considering offers from in state schools to keep running.  Also look out for Erin Leonard who finished 5th as a Freshman.

GMC Boys Cross Country finishes the season strong.

The GMC Prep Boys Cross Country team finished the season in a very strong manner.

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GMC took 1st, 2nd, 5th, 6th and 9th. From left to righ for GMCt: Hunter Kimball, Aaron Kirkland, Taylor Sherwood, Kaylon Farley, and Dylan Smith

On 22 October they competed in the Baldwin County Run with Baldwin High School and John Milledge Academy.  The Bulldogs came in 2nd on the day just behind Baldwin HS.    This is the first time that these three schools have competed together in an event in recent memory.

Next up for the Bulldogs was the Single A (Public) Area 4 meet hosted by GMC.

Start on the Area 4 Single A Public boys race.

Start on the Area 4 Single A Public boys race.

The Bulldogs won the team title in dominating fashion over Towns County, Commerce, ACE and Lincoln County.  GMC won the race with 22 points, and won by 28 points over Towns County.  Sophmore’s Aaron Kirkland and TJ Johnson were expecially excited about the win.  Kirkland stated “We wanted to come out and win for the team and the school.  TJ and I will not be at the State race, so for us, today was our biggest race of the season.”

Last Saturday 7 November, the GMC Bulldogs ran at the GHSA State Championships hosted at the Carrollton Elementary School in Carrollton, GA.  This course is traditionally one of the most difficult in the state, and the rain made it into a muddy mess.

At the start, ready to run.

At the start, ready to run.

The Bulldog were without two top runners from the Area meet due to prior commitments.  Despite this the GMC Cross Country team managed a 2nd place finish to Drew Charter out of Atlanta.  The top runner for GMC was Kaylon Farley, he was followed by Taylor Sherwood, Dylan Smith and Michael Barnes.  Ethan Yopp finished out the scoring runners for GMC.  Speaking of the conditions of the course, Freshman Taylor Sherwood said “The course itself was not extremely challenging. What made it so difficult was the all the mud that was on the course. There was literally no dry land to be seen.  Under other weather conditions, the course will not be as bad.  Heartbreak Hill will always be bad on the second time around.”

“I am so proud of the boys this year.  They worked very hard and overcame some adversity to finish 2nd in the state”  Prep school Cross Country coach Debbie Barsby exclaimed.  Speaking of the state race “We knew that conditions would be difficult, with the rain and the amount of runners that were ahead of us.  But each team had to deal with the same issues.”  Assistant Coach Rob Sherwood added “If you look at the top 10 runners on the team, all were either Freshmen or Sophomores.  We are looking forward to an even stronger team next year.”

The 7 GMC runners with the runner-up trophy.

The 7 GMC runners with the runner-up trophy.

Freshman Dylan Smith added “The 2nd place finish just motivates us to work harder in the off-season to win next year.”

GCSU Women at Regionals

The Georgia College women’s cross country team finished within the top-15 overall Saturday at the NCAA Southeast Regional hosted by Wingate University.

The Georgia College team braved the muddy conditions, jumping up two spots from last year and finishing in 13th place out of 28 teams with an average team time of 26 minutes. “In tough conditions, the women ran their best race of the season”, said first year head coach Steven Cary. “They looked poised and they looked focused.”

Katherine Yost (Norcross, Georgia) once again led the way for the Bobcats, garnering her third top-20 finish of the season. Yost sprinted through the finish line in 17th place with a time of 23:58, the best finish in school history, as well as her fastest in a Bobcat uniform. Finishing within the top-25, Yost received accolades for the All-Region Team, becoming just the second Georgia College women’s runner to ever receive the award.

Following Yost, three Bobcat women crossed the line within the 26 minute mark: Rachel Pasko (Jefferson, Georgia), Rebecca Winslow (Lawrenceville, Georgia) and Caroline Williams (Suwanee, Georgia).

Pasko finished in 80th place with a time of 26:00:07, while Winslow was just three-tenths of a second behind in 82nd at 26:01. Williams slid into 100th place, finishing with a time of 26:35.

Mariah Maring (Lawrenceville) and Abbey Jordan (Milton) rounded out the finishes for the Bobcat squad, racing in at 124th and 128th.

“What a phenomenal runner. She came in and, in three races, accomplished what few Bobcat runners have accomplished”, Cary said about Yost after the race. “Her All-Region performance is one that will be remembered for a long time.”

The University of Montevallo claimed the top spot at the meet, placing five runners within the top-10 overall. Totaling just 30 points, the Falcons finished 78 ahead of second place Wingate University. The top overall individual finish was claimed by Queen’s University runner Catie Byrd, who finished with a time of 22:25.

This finish marks the end of a successful cross country season. “I’m excited to see the women continue to improve over the next couple of years, and I look for us to continue this momentum into the spring and next fall”, said Cary.

The Bobcat women earned two top-10 results as they placed third at the Division II Georgia Collegiate Championships, as well as placing eighth at the Peach Belt Conference Championship.

GCSU Men at NCAA Regionals

The Georgia College men’s cross country team had the best NCAA Southeast Regional finish in school history Saturday at Wingate University, as the Bobcats finished seventh out of 28 teams.

Senior Paul McNeil (Dunwoody, Georgia) led the Bobcat men across the finish line in the 10K race, finishing 21st overall with a time of 34:20. The excellent finish earned McNeil All-Region honors for the second year in a row, making this the first time that a runner has been named to the team twice in program history.

“After today’s performance, Paul established himself as one of the greatest competitors to come to this program,” said first year head coach Steven Caryafter the meet. “He ran with guts and determination the entire second half of the season. It’s fitting that he ends his Georgia College career becoming the only runner to ever earn All-Region honors twice.”

Seniors Michael Warrick (Marietta, Georgia) and James Ryden (Atlanta, Georgia) finished within the 25th minute, earning the 36th and 40th spots. Warrick finished with a time of 35:02 and Ryden with a time of 35:10. Classmate Trevor Turner (Snellville, Georgia) finished 77th with a time of 36:42.

“Paul, James, Trevor and Michael are the epitome of what Bobcat athletics are all about”, Cary said about the four seniors. “Their dedication to their school, their running and their teammates is unrivaled. Their time at Georgia College has been nothing short of spectacular.”

The freshman duo, Trent Johnson (Dacula, Georgia) and Joshua Warren (Fayetteville, Georgia) finished in 68th and 93rd. The sophomore Jim Galvin(Tucker, Georgia) finished 85th.

“After conference, we approached today’s race with a chip on our shoulders”, Cary said. “While top three was our main goal, we’re going to walk away from the season knowing that we left our mark on this program’s history with a solid seventh place finish.”

The University of Mount Olive claimed first place at the Regionals, tallying just 52 points. Mars Hill runner Mark Griggs became the individual champion, as he crossed the finished line in first place with a time of 32:33.

The Bobcat men will end an excellent season having risen to a program-high fourth in the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Southeast Region rankings and garnering top-10 team finishes in four races (including second at the Furman Invitational and the Division II Collegiate Championships).

NJCAA Division III National Championships – Results

The GMC Women Cross Country team finished their season at the NJCAA Division III National Championships this morning at Stanley Park in Westfield, MA.

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Jones, 5th from the right running with the pack around the 1.5 k mark.

Freshman Jacqueline Jones led the way for GMC with a very fast time of 22:25.  This was not only a Personal Record for her, but also is believed to the a school record for the women’s program.

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Skinner with about 1k until the finish. She twisted her ankle right before this picture and still ran a Personal Record.

The other runner, Sophmore, Nina Skinner ran a 24:00 which also was a Personal Record for her.  Nina ran the last mile of the race on a twisted ankle that greatly slowed her.  Both ladies ran a great race and represented the school exceptionally well.

The entire Women’s team had a great season.
The men have one more race as Adam and John Dougherty will travel to Levelland, TX for the NJCAA Half Marathon National Championships on 21 November.
Adam Dougherty, Jacqueline Jones, Nina Skinner and John Dougherty before the women's race.

Adam Dougherty, Jacqueline Jones, Nina Skinner and John Dougherty before the women’s race.

Mercer University Women – Southern Conference Championship

The Mercer University women’s cross country team finished seventh at the 2015 Southern Conference Cross Country Championship at the Furman University Golf Course thanks to a Top-20 performance from senior Jenna Gipperich.

Gipperich fell just shy of All-SoCon honors, finishing 19th overall with a time of 19:23.43 on Saturday morning. She was followed by fellow senior Kami Orrender, who crossed the line in 19:44.42 to place 26th overall.

Freshman Bethanie Bailey was the Bears’ third finisher in the race, completing the 5k course in 20:10.10 en route to a 36th place finish. The Warner Robins, Ga., native was the fifth freshman to cross the finish line, joining the men’s team’s Ahmed Jama on the SoCon All-Freshman Team.

Cheyenne Andrew was just seconds behind Bailey in 39th place with a time of 20:19.64, while Victoria Rogers (20:38.53) rounded out the Top 5 in 47th.Courtney Czerniak finished sixth for the Bears in 20:39.13, while Shannon Millikin (20:47.74) and Kataryna O’Neil (21:21.95) wrapped up Mercer’s runners in action.

Mercer tallied 164 points on the strength of a 20:03.23 average time and saw its bid for a fifth straight conference championship with a sixth place or better team finish fall short. Furman claimed the team title for the fourth straight year, while Chattanooga and UNC-Greensboro rounded out the top three.

Mercer closes out the 2015 season at the NCAA South Regionals in Tuscaloosa, Ala. on Friday, November 13.

Mercer University – Southern Conference Championships

The Bears leaving the starting line. Jama is 4th from the left.

Mercer University freshman Ahmed Jama set a personal record for the second straight meet, leading the men’s cross country team at the 86th annual Southern Conference Cross Country Championship on Saturday morning.

Jama finished 20th overall and third among SoCon freshmen to earn a spot on the All-SoCon Freshman Team. The Woodstock, Ga., native eclipsed his personal record by 21 seconds, crossing the line in 25:18.90, a new program record at the SoCon Championship.

The Bears finished ninth in the team standings with a total team score of 223, thanks to a season-best average time of 26:40.85. Furman won the team title for the fourth straight year, while VMI and ETSU rounded out the top three.

Cameron Gatt was the next Bear to cross the finish line, finishing 35th overall with a season-best time of 26:11.21 in his first SoCon Championship. Nicholas Ashmead and Mark Brannen finished 57th and 58th, as both also eclipsed their top marks this season with times of 26:58.11 and 27:01.93 respectively. Aurelien Bourgeon rounded out the scoring as Mercer’s fifth finisher, placing 70th overall with a time of 27:54.07.

Ross Porter placed sixth for Mercer, finishing the 8k course in 28:11.73. Abraham Balawi (28:35.65), Evan Park (28:47.47) and Justin Hanson (28:51.24) wrapped up the Bears’ second trip to the SoCon Championship.

Mercer closes out the 2015 season at the NCAA South Regionals in Tuscaloosa, Ala. on Friday, November 13.

Middle Georgia Regional/Area results

AAA

3 Jamarion Tucker       12 Washington County     19:22.60

6 Alec Albright         10 Washington County     20:09.19

8 Elliott Price          9 Washington County     20:28.24

9 Malik Wiggins          9 Washington County     20:30.57

16 Evan Josey            9 Washington County     21:07.75

1 Washington County      42

1 Ashlee Dixon          11 Washington County     24:41.89

3 Aniah Poole           11 Washington County     27:54.06

5 Amber St. John        9 Washington County     28:21.73

7 Nia Johnson           12 Washington County     28:59.61

8 Courtney Johnson   11 Washington County     29:59.58

1 Washington County      24

Results  are here.

AA – Region 4

1 Carl Ellis Corley        Bleckley Co.          16:54.00

2 Austin Cook              Bleckley Co.          17:43.00

3 Bronson Sanders          Bleckley Co.          17:52.00

4 C. J. Rich               Bleckley Co.          18:01.00

5 Dayton Cannon            Bleckley Co.          18:20.00

6 Taylor Harrell           Bleckley Co.          18:31.00

7 Anuj Patel               Bleckley Co.          18:38.00

8 Michael Williams         Northeast             19:21.00

9 Quantavious Albritton    Northeast             19:23.00

10 Frank Spafford           Lamar Co.            19:24.00

1 Bleckley 15

2  Lamar 67

3  Northeast  79

4. Monticello  82

AA – Region 4

1 Ellen Powell             Bleckley Co.          20:59.00

2 Alina Jablonski          Monticello            21:59.00

3.Macy Moe                 Bleckley Co.          22:13.00

4 Jahnaria Brown           Bleckley Co.          22:52.00

5 Ashley Cannon            Lamar Co.             22:56.00

6 Tori Deeson              Bleckley Co.          22:59.00

7 Kenique Ways             Northeast             23:41.00

8 Teamber Solomon          Northeast             23:42.00

9 Margaret Henry           Lamar Co.             23:46.00

10 McKinley Cranford       Bleckley Co.          24:28.00

1.   Bleckley  20

2.  Lamar  48

3.  Northeast  60

Results are here.

Area 4 A (Public)

Boys

2 Aaron Kirkland           GMC                   19:26.00

3 TJ Johnson               GMC                   19:35.00

4 Taylor Sherwood          GMC                   19:53.00

5 Jared Taylor             ACE                   20:00.00

6 Kaylon Farley            GMC                   20:02.00

7 Michael Barnes           GMC                   20:09.00

GMC  22 points – 1st place

ACE  101 points – 4th place

Girls

14 Lyssa Blair              GMC                   28:14.00

17 Macie Newell             GMC                   31:24.00

18 Alyssa Easley            GMC                   31:46.00

19 Mary Elizabeth Jones     GMC                   32:10.00

20 Taylor Garnto            GMC                   32:15.00    20

3  GMC 78

Results here.

Area 1 A(Private)

2 Afolabi-Brown, Tunji         Mount De Sales        17:47.85

3 Martin, Will                 First Presby          18:22.91

4 Bridges, Dylan               First Presby          18:59.07

5 Kim, Allen                   Mount De Sales        19:12.46

6 Barwick, Ben                 Tattnall Squ          19:20.01

8 Marshall, Asa                Stratford Academy     19:33.89

10 Khurana, Sachin              Stratford Academy     19:46.44

11 Martin, Cooper               First Presby          19:46.79

13 Smith, Heyward               First Presby          19:51.00   13

Team

1.   FPD – 53

Stratford 108 – 3rd

MDS 115 – 4th

Tattnall 242  10th

Girls

2 Tallant, Jessy               Mount De Sales        21:27.30

4 Sutherland, Emory            Stratford Academy     21:50.14

6 Siror, Faith                 Mount De Sales        22:04.38

8 Peterson, McKenzie           First Presby          22:36.44

9 Bonfim, Mary Jane            First Presby          22:46.96

11 Clayton, Lizzi               Stratford Academy     23:04.12

12 Peterson, Ellie              Stratford Academy     23:06.10

13 Hays, Cali Ruth              Stratford Academy     23:06.91

14 Barroso, Olivia              Mount De Sales        23:20.69

15 Thompson, Rebecca            Mount De Sales        23:26.88

Team

MDS  53  1st

Stratford  56  3rd

FPD  87  4th

Results here.