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Cross Country

Boonton's Joinson goes the distance

BOONTON _ While in eighth grade, Boonton's Elli Joinson had surgery on both knees, putting her ability to run competitively in jeopardy. Joinson couldn't imagine not being on the course and the track so she diligently did her physical therapy after the arthroscopic procedures to repair her meniscuses and resumed one of her greatest passions. "It was horrible," said Joinson, now a junior at Boonton High School, of the unfortunate circumstances and subsequent rehabilitation. "My doctor didn't know if I'd be the same. I had to work really, really hard." Since then, Joinson literally has gone the distance, getting stronger…

Cross country sectionals

PARSIPPANY _ Mountain Lakes' Izzi Gengaro and Kyra Velock most often run side by side or in a pack with teammates before Velock breaks away. On Saturday, Nov. 5, however, Gengaro went out fast, maintained the lead and pulled off what was a shocker to some, prevailing in the North Jersey Section 2, Group II race at Central Park in a time of 19:36.09, a personal record. It was only the second time Gengaro, a junior, outraced Velock, a senior. Velock was the runner-up in the sectional, finishing in 19:52.77, but it was all for the good as the Lakers captured the team championship…

Randolph rules at Morris XC Championships

PARSIPPANY _ Only in the literal sense did Randolph's Abby Loveys have cold feet. Loveys, the sophomore whose effort was close to perfect when she ran an 18:15.02 - a personal record - to take top individual honors at the Morris County Girls Cross Country Championship on Tuesday, Oct. 25, certainly did not lack confidence or hesitate. She was actually bold from start to finish and in command, just as she planned. The only thing that bothered Loveys when she traversed the course at Central Park, powering Randolph to an eighth team crown, was the chill in her feet. "My feet were a…

NJAC Championships

PARSIPPANY _ Quick in transition as a point guard, Sophie Henderson of Villa Walsh thought she'd be playing basketball for the duration of high school. After the conclusion of her sophomore year, Henderson, now a senior, decided to drop basketball and soccer and add cross country in order to improve for spring track. It didn't take long for her to make a name for herself on the trails. As of Tuesday, Oct. 18, Henderson achieved a first, topping the field in the Northwest Jersey Athletic Conference Small Schools Race at Central Park with a time of 19:47.43. The Vikings, with Morgan Mehmel (2nd) and Hope Crann…

Campbell, George in fine form

PARSIPPANY _ Pope John's Anna Campbell was striving to take her time below 19 minutes. Running without a plan, just "going for it," Campbell, a senior, completed the course at Central Park in a personal record 18:55.61, helping the Lions nip Mount Olive, 27-28, on Wednesday, Sept. 28. Her time was the best among all large school female runners at the batch meet. Montville's Anna George also excelled in the second NJAC varsity girls race, ending in 19:11.31. "I'm very happy," Campbell said. "My goal this year was to break 19:00 and I did it. This is the first step to getting…

Roxbury Invitational

ROXBURY _ The lake, the halfway point, was where Mendham's Lucy Jeffs chose to make her move at the Roxbury Cross Country Invitational. At the time, Jeffs was in sixth or seventh place. She was not enjoying the heat - about 91 degrees - or the humidity that made the first meet of the season even more of a challenge. But Jeffs, now a junior and one of the Minutemen's veteran elite, kept pushing and came in second in the Girls Fastest 4, a 5,000-meter run, with a time of 19:44.62. "It was very hot. Really hot," Jeffs said. "I wasn't sure how to race or…

Castaneda, Loveys in top 12 at MOC

HOLMDEL _ Randolph freshman Abby Loveys, fittingly, was with Sierra Castaneda for much of the Meet of Champions race. Loveys stuck with Castaneda, a West Morris senior, until the bowl, struggling briefly due to a cramp in her side.

Castaneda, Mendham reign at MCC

PARSIPPANY _ Sierra Castaneda could feel the heat, hear the footsteps and that was just fine. West Morris' Castaneda actually very much liked the fact that Abby Loveys of Randolph was right behind her for a good portion of the Morris County Girls Cross Country Championship Race.

Villa Walsh, Mendham take NJAC team titles

PARSIPPANY _ Mary Lynch and the Villa Walsh cross country coaches sat in a basement room in the school's gymnasium and considered the possibilities. "Maybe you can be first," one of the coaches said to Lynch, referring to the upcoming Northwest Jersey Athletic Conference Small Schools Race. Another one reminded her that "Anything can happen." In short order, Lynch, began to believe what seemed impossible.