BETHLEHEM >> Annie Glodek continued to craft a spectacular end to her scholastic cross-country career Friday.
So, too, did the entire Perkiomen Valley girls team for its 2016 season.
Glodek and her Viking teammates came away from Lehigh University’s Stabler Arena complex with quite a medal haul from the District 1 Championship Meet. Glodek scored an individual third-place finish in the girls Class AAA race, and the squad as a whole led the team standings to qualify for next weekend’s PIAA Championships at Hershey’s Parkview Course.
Along with the medals — the team championship ones awarded to the first seven varsity runners — PV also received a trophy commemorating its first-ever AAA title. It had been a district team champion previously at the AA level.
“Obviously, winning the team championship … it’s a good springboard for states,” head coach Ryan Sullivan said. “We feel there is still a lot of room for improvement, if we’re going to go out and challenge at states.”
Glodek was up to the challenge of improving on last year’s seventh-place showing at districts. Coming off her third straight Pioneer Athletic Conference title one week ago, the Viking senior finished third in a personal-record time of 17:55.
“I’m very excited about that,” she said. Glodek was headed only by Downingtown West’s Aislinn Devlin, who clocked a solid 17:12, and Unionville’s Anna Juul (17:40). She held off a late-charging North Penn junior Ariana Gardizy, who crossed the line four seconds behind in fourth, to cap a strong run over the final stretch.
“After we crossed the bridge, I passed two girls,” Glodek recalled. “At the three-kilometer mark, I passed another. When I got to third place, I held it there.”
PV’s team title score (159 points) was bolstered by Michele Daniels placing 24th (18:54). Julia Dorley (34th, 19:11), Jocelyn Rotay (43rd, 19:17) and Teaghan Scheinbecker (55th, 19:32) combined to put the Vikes ahead of second-place Downingtown West (175) and third-place Unionville (178), who each had pairs of Top 10 finishers but also two runners placing behind Scheinbecker.
“Our team’s average split was 18:55,” Sullivan noted. “That’s the fastest ever during my time as coach.”
In the boys’ AAA race, Owen J. Roberts’ Liam Conway followed up his own PAC championship finish by going sixth in a lead pack that saw him 20 seconds behind race winner Rusty Kujdych of Neshaminy (15:20). Conway had an even tougher stretch run, the Wildcat junior (15:40) beating Council Rock North’s Tim Haas and William Tennent’s Evan Hutton by one second.
“I picked off a couple guys in the second half,” he said. “The last 800, I had something left.”
Like Glodek, Conway’s finish showed considerable improvement over his 11th-place run in 2015. He’s shooting for enough improvement at states to keep his medal count increasing.
“I’m happy with moving up another five places,” he said. “I was 28th at states last year, so my goal this year is to medal.”
Spring-Ford’s trademark tight pack, which secured a team championship at the PAC meet, fell short of state qualification. Though Shane Ainscoe (37th, 16:17) made the cut for states, the Rams (340 points) ended up sixth, well behind final (fifth place) qualifier West Chester Henderson (283).
The area’s girls teams will be well-represented at Hershey, with seven runners joining the PV contingent.
OJR’s Allison Brunton (10th, 18:31) joined Glodek in the Top 10, with Spring-Ford’s Isabella Marchini (15th, 18:41), Boyertown’s Gillian Kasitz (19th, 18:51) and Roberts’ Mary Bernotas (20th) making the “second 10.” Following them are the Rams’ Gabriella Bamford (27th, 18:54) and Emily Smith (28th, 18:56) and Phoenixville’s Natalee Serwatka (36th, 19:12).
In the field of 39 boys moving on to the state meet, Boyertown’s Dominic DeRafelo (30th, 16:09) was the area’s only other qualifier.
Upper Perkiomen and Pope John Paul II were the class of the middle-sized bracket: The Indians with three individual qualifiers, the Golden Panthers with a second-place team finish.
UP’s sibling duo of Landon and Serena Detweiler produced two of the program’s three Top 10 finishers, Sam Daub joining them on the boys side. Landon was fourth in 17:00, and Serena grabbed the last (eighth) spot on the girls’ side by running a 20:18.
Daub, in turn, was eighth in 17:22, edging out PJP’s lead runner John Schiele (17:23).
“I give her advice here and there … tips on competition,” Landon, a senior, said of the interaction with his sophomore sister.
Landon was in the middle of an otherwise-tight pack of Holy Ghost Prep runners who scored a lopsided (22 points) AA team title. The Firebirds had five runners finish seventh or better behind race winner Callahan Lennon (16:18) and New Hope-Solebury runner-up Matt Peshek (16:45).
“One and two went out hard, and it kind of stayed that way,” he recalled. “The whole race, I was pacing myself by looking at the man in front of me.”
Serena found herself in a pack comprised primarily of runners from Villa Joseph Marie (four) and Nazareth Academy (two). Katie Irelan (first, 19:18) led VJM’s team-championship finish ahead of Lower Moreland’s Kerry Kovacs (19:34).
“It was pretty tight at the beginning,” Serena noted, “but then it spread out.”
Daub went into the boys’ race well aware of what it would take for him to be a state qualifier. His placement and time were both vastly improved on his 38th-place (18:46) run last year.
“It feels good to make states,” he said. “I just outraced at the finish. 17:22 was a personal record for me.”
Schiele led PJP’s Top 20 pack of Shane McKeon (11th, 17:25), Jack Phillips (15th, 17:44), Andrew McKeon (17:49) and Robert Erwin (18th, 18:07) that scored 69 points to bypass New Hope-Solebury (80).
Upper Perk was the area’s highest-finishing girls team, placing fifth with 184 points.
Pottstown’s Khalif Burgess led his team with a 24th-place (18:28) run in AA. Adrianna Hayward finished 31st (22:08) to lead the Trojan girls squad. … The top 15 boys and girls AA finishers were awarded medals. In Class AAA, it was also the top 15 girls while the top 25 boys received medals. … The class of the A field were Dock Mennonite’s Tim Kennel and Country Day School’s Emma Seifried. Jenkintown was the boys’ team champion (25) and CDS the girls (34).