Although the beautiful new facility may have been the star of the event, there were also times like Sydney Foreman's NC best.
Boys Invitational Section
Philip Hall (Terry Sanford) went straight to the front, and it was somewhat surprising that none of the other top runners seriously challenged him, instead trailing after and allowing him to separate early. Hall hit the 800 in roughly 2:14 and crossed the mile mark in 4:36, which bodes well for his 1600 times this winter and spring. During the first two laps, Tima Karginov (Chapel Hill) was at the front of the chase pack, and Clifford Buck was also an early contender. By the midpoint, Caleb Smith (Patrick County VA) was second and Andrew Fea (North Lincoln) was moving into third.
As Hall continued to gradually pull away over the second half of the race, the runners in the first group behind him constantly shifted as they challenged Smith for second place. In the last 3 laps, David Hager (Woodlawn School) entered the equation as other athletes began to fall off the pace. Hager actually took over second place briefly on the back stretch of the final lap, but as Hall crossed the finish line in 9:34.2 Smith was busy fighting off the challenge. Fea ended up fourth as seven boys broke the 10-minute mark in the windy conditions.
Boys 3200m Run Invite ==================================================================== Name Yr Team Time Wind -------------------------------------------------------------------- 1 Philip Hall Unattached 9:34.2h 2 Caleb Smith Unattached 9:44.1h 3 David Hager Unattached 9:47.6h 4 Andrew Fea Unattached 9:53.2h 5 Chris Boyle Unattached 9:57.0h 6 Jack Paddison Unattached 9:57.3h 7 Tima Karginov Unattached 9:57.5h 8 Evan Georges Unattached 10:00.6h
Girls Invitational Section
Just like Philip Hall, Sydney Foreman (Ardrey Kell) took command immediately, and in fact she opened up an even bigger initial lead. That meant the only thing in doubt was her time, and early indications were that it would be very fast (she made it through 800 meters in under 2:40 and crossed the mile mark at 5:26). Behind her, a very competitive lead pack formed quickly, and those runners would proceed to push each other through the middle part of the race. Natalie Andrejchak (Robinson) was the initial pacesetter for that group, with Emma Brown (Providence Day) and Bianca Bishop (Providence) right on her shoulder at 400 meters. Brown made an aggressive move on the second lap, pulling away from the chase pack by about 10 meters and forcing them to respond. At the halfway point, Brown held second while being pursued by Bishop and Victoria Hutchens (Patrick County VA).
As Foreman continued to push herself, her pace slipped just a bit (last year, she had Kaitlin Kramer to pull her over that stretch). Nonetheless, nobody from the rest of the field was able to make a dent in her lead, and in fact she continued to pull away gradually. Her final time of 11:03.3 was just short of last year's 11:00, but showed that Foreman is in great shape for the start of winter track season. Meanwhile, the excitement was happening in the two packs behind her. Bishop and Hutchens battled all the way to the finish, pushing each other below the 11:20 mark; behind them, Jennifer Stephenson (Village Christian) took command of the second group, and she would eventually outduel Brown and Sydney Teague (Ardrey Kell) to break 11:30. All 13 of the girls in this section ran faster than 11:45, and adding Caitlin Potter (North Lincoln) from the open section that made 14 under 12 minutes. Also noteworthy: Madison Harman (Watauga) was dead last after 400 meters, but she was following a steady-pace race plan; she moved gradually up through the field to finish with three other girls in the 11:30's (Andrejchak, Samantha Teague, and Allie Castro).
Girls 3200m Run Invite ==================================================================== Name Yr Team Time Wind -------------------------------------------------------------------- 1 Sydney Foreman Unattached 11:03.3h 2 Bianca Bishop Unattached 11:19.3h 3 Victoria Hutchens Unattached 11:19.5h 4 Jennifer Stephenson Unattached 11:25.1h 5 Emma Brown Unattached 11:25.9h 6 Sydney Teague Unattached 11:26.2h 7 Samantha Teague Unattached 11:32.1h 8 Madison Harman Unattached 11:32.4h