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Girls All-Freshman XC Team
By: Kevin Milsted

Freshman of the Year:
Morgana D'Ottavi - Montgomery Blair

Morgana D'Ottavi is the clear choice for freshman cross country runner of the year. She was ranked in the top ten in Montgomery County the entire season after her first race in which she placed 8th in 20:09.37 at Mount St. Mary's. She broke the course record in winning the DCC individual title in 20:12.22 and placed sixth at the county championship with a season best time of 19:27.86. She qualified individually for the state championship and placed 10th with a time of 20:28. According to Coach Charlie Demma, D'Ottavi is a student in Montgomery Blair's Communications and Arts program and her Italian is as polished as her running.

2. Chelsie Pennello - Poolesville

Chelsie Pennello kicked off the season as the first female finisher in the novice race at the Woodward Relays. The time was 25:25 on the difficult Georgetown Prep course. By the time she returned to Georgetown Prep for the XC Classic, she ran 21:38 on a similar course to place second in the freshman race. She was the second best freshman at the county championship meet with a season best 5k time of 20:12.36. She was 8th in the 2A West region with a 3 mile time of 19:08.55, and 13th at the 2A state championship with a time of 21:25.

3. Naomi Sheppard - Northwest

Naomi Sheppard worked her way onto the varsity team at Northwest when she placed 10th in a dual meet against Whitman to seal the division title as the fifth runner. She placed 20th at the county championship with a season best time of 20:20.83 and 11th at the 4A West region meet in 21:32.95. Her best race came at the state championship with a 16th place finish in 20:42. She was just three seconds back from 12th place.

4. Cassidy Burke - Good Counsel

Cassidy Burke led the young Falcons in every race she ran this season. She ran a season best time of 20:28 at the Glory Days Invitational in which she placed sixth in the varsity B race. She placed fifth at the WCAC Championship meet with a time of 21:34. According to Coach Tom Arnold, she is a talented speech and debate team member.

5. Grace McDonald - Sherwood

Grace McDonald began the season with 5k races primarily over 22 minutes, but came on strong towards the end. She ran 21:23 to lead her team at the Georgetown Prep XC Classic and again led her team with a 16th place finish at the county championship in a season best time of 20:15.82. She was 16th in the 4A West region in 21:56.63 and 31st in the state in 21:18. Coach Dan Reeks recollects her father running for a state championship cross country team with Churchill in the "late 70's or early 80's."

6. Calley Mayer-Marks - Montgomery Blair

Calley Mayer-Marks was only a few steps behind Morgana D'Ottavi in last year's DCC Championship middle school race, but battled an unspecified "growing type" of knee injury throughout this season. Running through the injury, she placed fourth at the DCC Championship in 22:05.95 and dropped a season best time of 20:41.21 at the county championship. Her talent is obvious but an injury flare-up at the regional meet only allowed her to finish 54th in the 4A West.

7. Harriet Symington - Walt Whitman

On any other team in the state, Harriet Symington would have been a varsity runner, but the state champion Whitman Vikings could not squeeze her onto the varsity squad. She placed fifth in the freshman-sophomore race at the Octoberfest Invitational and fourth in the freshman race at the Georgetown Prep XC Classic. Her grand finale came in winning the freshman-sophomore race at the Montgomery County Championship Meet in 20:53.4.

8. Lexi Levenson - Wootton

A true running novice, Lexi Levenson gets nervous before every race according to Coach Kellie Redmond but is always dependable when the gun goes off. She clocked 23:23 in her first experience at Hereford High School at the Bull Run Invitational but later ran 21:33 at the state championship. Her season best 5k time was 20:56.92 at the county championship. Coach Redmond says she "gets it" and won the Frost Middle School award for citizenship, character, and grades.

9. Kendra Meredith - Northwest

Kendra Meredith is a sprinter from the Maryland Titans track program. Coach Beth Muehl says that she and Naomi Sheppard are two of the most athletic freshmen she has ever coached. After running a big personal best time of 21:04 at the Glory Days Invitational, Meredith shaved a few more seconds off her 5k time with a third place finish in 20:57.69 in the freshman-sophomore race at the county championship meet. After placing 40th in the 4A West, she showed her power on the Hereford hills with a 34th place time of 21:23. It was the fourth fastest time of the day by a Montgomery County freshman. She plans to play basketball this winter.

10. Paula Rabade - Winston Churchill

In 2006, Churchill was loaded with talented girls including a number of freshman. That talent has all graduated and now Paula Rabade leads a strong freshman class that is stepping up to the plate. Four freshman girls made up the Churchill top 7 that missed qualifying for the state championship by 12 points. Rabade led the way with her best race of the season: a 30th place finish in 22:46.42 at the 4A West Championship. She was 41st at the county championship with a season best time of 21:02.00.

Honorable Mention

Irina Bukharin - Walter Johnson
Amanda Cohen - B-CC
Grace Hanger - Richard Montgomery
Zoe Kaplan - Northwest
Elka Lee-Shapiro - Richard Montgomery
Lauren Logan - Albert Einstein
Casey Mulloy - Gaithersburg
Nicole Polen - Gaithersburg
Regina Schreiber - Quince Orchard
Elizabeth Zeichner - Walt Whitman

Track & Field 2010 All-Freshman Boys Girls
Cross Country 2009 All-Freshman Boys Girls
Track & Field 2009 All-Freshman Boys Girls
Cross Country 2008 All-Freshman Boys Girls
Track & Field 2008 All-Freshman Boys Girls
Cross Country 2007 All-Freshman Boys Girls
Track & Field 2007 All-Freshman Team
Spotlight on Class of 2010 Cross Country Freshmen Article


2010-11-18 02:07:42

Kendra Meredith and Naomi Sheppard are both sprinters from the Maryland Titans Track and Field Club. Great Job Girls---Looking forward to seeing you both shine in the indoor track season.

2010-11-18 19:01:26

Elizabeth Zeichner got a 20:54 at counties and still didn't make the cut.

2010-11-18 19:34:14

Some mistakes were made with the Glory Days meet

2010-11-20 15:05:02

how do girls who got 20:50's and under not make the top 10?

2010-11-22 08:11:56

20:50's is so much more elite than 21:02. Time to start a revolution.

2010-11-22 17:20:52

elizabeth zeichner should have made the cut, she beat most of these girls when she raced against them. but overall, i think this list was pretty accurate and i am impressed by the amount of talent in the class of 2014.

2010-12-04 22:40:38

Elizabeth Z and Kendra M both had a PR at counties, and Elizabeth was about 3 seconds faster. How did Kendra get in the rankings, but Elizabeth only got an honorable mention (was it because her team just has so much depth that she wasn't able to run in regionals and states?)!

a person
2011-02-25 20:55:40

Just letting you all know, another freshman that did not make the cut went a 20:47 at octoberfest, beat out the girl for 5th and did not make it because there was an error with her chip at glory days, which she did not run.

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