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Divisional Analysis
By: Kevin Milsted
webmaster@mocorunning.com
2007-09-09


Boys Predictions
WJ over Sherwood
Springbrook over Paint Branch
Springbrook over Blake
Paint Branch over Blake
Rockville over Watkins Mill
Churchill over Richard Montgomery
Quince Orchard over Whitman
Northwood over Poolesville
Northwood over Kennedy
Poolesville over Kennedy
Magruder over Wootton
Clarksburg over Seneca Valley
Damascus over Gaithersburg
Damascus over Blair
Gaithersburg over Blair

Girls Predictions
WJ over Sherwood
Paint Branch over Springbrook
Paint Branch over Blake
Springbrook over Blake
Rockville over Watkins Mill
Churchill over Richard Montgomery
Whitman over Quince Orchard
Poolesville over Northwood
Kennedy over Northwood
Poolesville over Kennedy
Magruder over Wootton
Clarksburg over Seneca Valley
Damascus over Gaithersburg
Damascus over Blair
Gaithersburg over Blair

Division I

The meet of the week is QO at Whitman. Whitman boys will get another crack at Quince Orchard after falling short at the Mount St. Mary’s Invitational. The depth of QO’s team might once again prove to be too much for Whitman, but the individual battle up front will be a sight to see with Silver-Korn and Palmer breaking up QO’s stalwart pack. The girls' teams appear evenly matched and the divisional implications are big. After finishing last year tied for the division lead, Quince Orchard knows that it’s not over until it’s over. The winner will walk away in good shape while the loser will likely have to finish the season undefeated to have a chance at the division title. If Mount St. Mary’s were scored as a dual meet between the two teams, Whitman would have won easily, but in a small, personal meet, QO might find a way.

The Churchill girls should make short work of the Richard Montgomery girls with their superior talent up front, but the boys’ match up is a little more interesting. Although this might be more of a battle to stay out of last place, it could be a telling match up for who could take the final spot to the state meet out of the 4A West later in the year. Both teams graduated key runners last year, but Churchill seems to be better recovered early on. Their young varsity team with no seniors seems to be on the rise while RM is in full rebuilding mode. This will be a good match up for both teams, who will probably get pushed around by divisional opponents for the rest of the season.

Division II

Magruder’s boys and girls looked just ok in their first meet. Wootton has not raced yet, but might not be deep enough to keep up with Magruder’s larger team. The Patriots can hope that their few strong individuals can give Magruder’s top runners a good race while possibly stealing the top few spots and giving their 4th and 5th runners a chance to steal the win.

Gaithersburg hosts Damascus and Blair for an intriguing tri meet. On the boy’s side, Blair has two strong runners up front, but as a team, they are not quite there yet. Damascus’s #1 should place first followed by Gaithersburg’s strong top two, but after that, the order could go a number of different ways. If Gaithersburg gets their third guy in front of Damascus’s pack of sophomores, then the outcome is in favor of Gaithersburg. If Damascus is able to overwhelm Gaithersburg’s #3 with their pack, then Gaithersburg is cooked. This matchup could very well determine the boys Division II champions and I'm liking Damascus right now, especially with several of Gaithersburg's expected varsity runners out of commission for the time being. On the girl’s side, Damascus should leave Blair and Gaithersburg battling for a 1-1 record.

Division III & IV

In Divisions III and IV, there will be a few mediocre match ups and a few unscored match ups due to lack of participation. Expect Clarksburg boys and girls to get off to good starts in their Division III match up against Seneca Valley. Springbrook, Blake, and Paint Branch will race in their battle for the consortium crown. None of these teams look very strong early on, but Paint Branch’s boys and girls might have the best chance to sweep after putting up decent times on a tough course at the Howard County Invitational. Springbrook still has to be favored over PB boys with stronger front runners, but it will still be close.

Rockville should be among the better boys’ teams in Division IV. We have yet to see what Poolesville has, but they could also shake it up in that division. I would guess that Poolesville will be the only team with a full-scoring girls’ team.






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