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Selection Criteria Set to Earn Berths on Invitational Teams
By: Dave Watt

Bethesda, MD. The Battle of the Potomac Cross Country (XC) Staff announced today the standards and criteria that will be used to consider runners for the premier Invitational Races at the 2nd annual cross country championship or “XC BORDER WAR 2”. The invitational 5K races will culminate the day of state XC battles at Smokey Glen Farm on November 17th.

Consideration will be made for runners who had an injury or simply had a poor race at a state championship or regional meet. "We will certainly consider a top boy or girl who had an unfortunate injury or illness that obscured an otherwise noteworthy fall season", said Dave Watt, Executive Director of the Battle of the Potomac. Private school runners’ performances at invitationals during the season will factor into the invitation process. The standards are based on race results over the past 2 years of regional and state championship competitions in Virginia and Maryland.

"Championship race performances will carry more weight as these races come towards season's end, said Watt. We simply want to host the best possible matchup of two of the arguably most competitive high school cross country states in the Southeast U.S."

Once invitations are issued, the first 45 girls or boys to commit to either state squad will fill the squad. Battle XC staff will issue invitations starting at Regional and Private School league Championship meets:

Maryland Runners criteria:
Public HS Regional or private schools’ Championship 5K times
Boys: 17:45
Girls: 21:00

Public HS State Championship (Hereford)
Boys: 17:50
Girls: 21:15
Or…Top 60 combined 1A, 2A, 3A and 4A finishers, whichever is less

Virginia Runners’ criteria:
Public HS Regional or private school championship 5K times
Boys: 16:50
Girls: 19:30

Northern Regional Championship (Burke Lake)
Boys: 16:05
Girls: 18:59
Public HS State Championship (Great Meadow)
Boys: 16:49
Girls: 20:00
Or…Top 60 combined A, AA, and AAA finishers, whichever is less

NOTE: *Parents or coaches may nominate any girl or boy for the invitational teams. Email Dave Watt ( with nominations starting November 5th.

In addition to the invitational 5K “battles”, there are three other key races. The day kicks off with a new 2500m middle school race. Any 6th through 8th grader in private or public school in the VA, DC and MD area may enter. The course is one loop of the XC BORDER WAR course. Open 5K races will be next on the Battle docket. Any high school JV or varsity runner is welcome to register. Teams may register and will be assigned to the boys and girls Open races. All registered runners will receive a shirt or team singlet and enjoy a hot freshly cooked smoked chicken dinner. Vegetarian chili will also be served. Medals will be given to the Top 20 runners in the Invitational races and Top 15 finishers in the Open races.

The XC BORDER WAR 2 amenities make this one special cross country battle. Each invitational runner will receive a Nike singlet in team colors, a free post-race smoked chicken dinner. Open race participants will receive a team shirt or singlet and the chicken dinner all for the $17 entry fee or $15 fee as member of a registered team. High school teams can save by signing up as a team. Check the event website, for registration information.

Race details: Champion Chip timing for all runners. The course is a double loop 5K; middle school racers run one 2500m loop. There is one significant hills and the terrain is mostly cut grass. Runners may wear spikes. All registered runners must wear the Battle of the Potomac singlet for each team or a same-colored shirt.

Nike is the proud presenting sponsor for the XC BORDER WAR 2: Battle of the Potomac. “Running is at the core of Nike and their support for high school running is unparallel in the running shoe and apparel industry”, said Watt. Bank of America recently committed to a major sponsorship of the cross country battle.

Online registration is OPEN at the Battle of the Potomac website:

The American Running Association is a nonprofit organization founded in 1968 to promote healthy living and active lifestyles among all Americans. It is dedicated to supporting runners through education and specialized programs, as well as encouraging all individuals from youths to adults to run and be fit. For more information about the ARA or to learn more about the Walk and Run programs, visit


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