DCC Cross Country Boys Score Big Against St. Mary’s


Tom Shade, Contributor

The warm temperatures were not ideal for running performance at the quadrangular meet at the St. Mary’s course with visiting DCC, Ridgway, and DuBois, but it didn’t stop many Cardinal teammates from reaching personal best times and course records.

“The heat is something runners can do their best to prepare for and still not be able to perform. When your body shuts down to prevent over-heating you have to listen to it. Every runner on all teams was affected with slower times than they would have had in cooler weather, and some became ill from mild heat exhaustion. We hope the runners learn to prepare even more from this through hydration this week, sleep, and more running in the heat to acclimatize their bodies a bit.”(Coach Shade).

The big contest of note was the DCC boys against St. Marys with the closest matchup they’ve had since 1997 which was the last time DCC defeated them. Tonight’s match was decided by 9 points (32-23), still a close finish in a XC meet. Despite John Ritsick’s (19:41) career best performance and solid runs by teammates Swisher(6th), Norman(7th), Piccirillo(8th), Swalligan(9th) & Paisely, the Dutch runners broke into the group and took the lower score. Grant Norman(21:04) set a personal course record in the run as well.
“John & Grant’s times were a pleasant surprise in this heat, but the Dutch runners managed to get between our first and second boys and that made the difference. Our runners are certainly capable of taking them on if we meet again this season.”

In the girls race it was Emily Williams who led the Lady Cards(24:10) with a personal course record and a first against Ridgway. Teammate Michaela Armanini(29:14) reached a major milestone qualifying for the XC honor roll at DCC. Other girls with noted performances were Liz Gankosky(26:54), Madisan Gill, and Rachel Miller, all of whom recorded lifetime-best runs.

“Nothing makes us more satisfied than improvement. Emily’s time at St. Marys ranks at #3 for DCC just behind Meghan Graeca from 2016, and the legendary first state qualifier, Ann Arnold, from 1981. The kids are getting acclimated to the heat this week in hopes of better performances, and we strive to keep everyone healthy.”
Also running for DuBois Central was Madisan Miller, Mercedes Raab, Beth Williams, and Alex Ochs. Three of the girl’s team were out with illness or injuries.
The Lady Dutch defeated all teams present, as did the DuBois men’s team.

The Cardinal boys scored a loss to DHS with an 18-45 marking, while the Dutch out-scored the Lady Cards 16-47. DuBois Central took a forfeit from both boys & girls from Ridgway due to low numbers by the Elkers.

“Look for the Elkers to have much larger numbers next year as first-year Coach Holly Morelli is not going to be satisfied with the present situation there. We had a long talk about building numbers now that they co-op with Johnsonburg, and I know things are going to move upward for the program. St. Marys has a very strong girls team and they are expected to win the AA District title, while DuBois continues their tradition of powerful teams. I can see only good things ahead for the Beaver squads in the years to come with their excellent program and coaches. DuBois Central will do all we can to match or exceed the challenges given to us by these neighboring teams.”

With 3 dual meets left, DCC travels to Kane on Tuesday.