North Port Cross Country Invitational

Isabel Hanewicz, Staff Writer

North Port, Fla. – Eight boys and six girls ventured to North Port, Florida, to compete in the North Port Cross Country Invitational. The meet was one of the only chances the Robinson High School cross country team will have to race against other teams in the 3A Region before competing in the regional meet, which determines whether the team will move on to compete at the state level.

Led by co-captains senior Fredrick Stanford and junior Jack Rogers, the boys placed 9th overall out of the 25 teams competing. Rogers was the first of the boys to finish, running a PR of 16:25.10 to place 14th out of 202, with Stanford following close behind, with a time of 16:42.90 to place 21st.

According to head Coach Mark Altimari, the girls were not able to race at full strength, due to losing three top varsity runners, including senior co-captain Julia DeYoung, to ACT testing. Individually, though, the girls raced well, with four out of the six girls running PR’s and senior co-captain Madison Hull running a 19:44.20 to place 17th out of the 198 girls competing.

The course, one loop and well-marked, led to the faster race times – along with the 4 girls who PR’ed, all 8 boys did, too – than cross country’s previous two meets of the season, which were both two loops and included mud, hills and standing water at certain points. The cross country team returns to action next Saturday, Sept. 28, in Titusville, Fla., for the flRunners Invitational 14, in what Altimari says will be the biggest meet of their regular season.