CUMBERLAND — Hampshire’s Hannah Lipps, who has signed an NCAA National Letter of Intent to continue her education and her cross country career at West Virginia University, and Southern’s Declan Horner, both finally seniors in the eyes of their area competitors, both captured their third straight Appalachian Mountain Athletic Conference cross country individual championships Oct. 5 during the AMAC Meet at Allegany College of Maryland and, for the third year in a row, head the 2017 All-Area Cross Country team.

The top 10 finishers in the boys and girls meets earn All-AMAC and All-Area status for the season, with 10 runners — six boys and four girls — repeating from last year’s team: Lipps, Abby Beeman and Corinna Strietbeck of Frankfort, and Hampshire’s Catherine Wiley for the girls, and Southern’s Horner and Ryan Hebb, Frankfort’s Derek Alt, Hampshire’s Bryson Dolly and Southern’s Christian Jordan and Zachary Warnick.

Lipps, the 2016 West Virginia Class AAA state champion and the West Virginia Region II Class AAA champion and third-place state finisher this year, won the AMAC title on the girls side, covering the 5,000 meters in 19:03, while Horner, the second-place state finisher in 2016, took the boys title in 16:59.

Hampshire took the girls team title easily with 25, followed by Northern with 55, Frankfort with 82, Southern with 118, Allegany 134, Fort Hill 162, Mountain Ridge 182 and Bishop Walsh 194.

Southern, too, ran away with the boys title at just 19 points, with Hampshire coming in at 69 for second place. Frankfort was third at 89, followed by Northern at 97 and Allegany at 116.

Keyser at 200, Fort Hill 213, Mountain Ridge 229 and Bishop Walsh 237 rounded out the team scoring.

Following Lipps for second place in the girls meet was her teammate Jayden Judy, just a freshman, who was voted Performer of the Meet, at 20:47. Frankfort’s Corinna Strietbeck was third at 21:01, Northern’s Faith Parandhamaia fourth at 21:08 and Southern’s freshman Brooke Davis fifth at 21:19.

Rounding out the girls top 10 were Hampshire’s Kelsey Mowery, sixth, in 21:28, Hampshire’s Cathy Wiley seventh for the second straight year at 21:40, Frankfort’s Abby Beeman eighth at 21:45, Hampshire’s Danielle Davis ninth at 21:45 and Northern’s Bailee Upole 10th at 22:11.

Southern’s Ryan Hebb finished second in the boys race for the second straight year, this year in 17:00, just a second off Horner’s first-place time, while Southern’s Zachary Warnick, who finished ninth last year, was third in 17:16. Hampshire’s Bryson Dolly, who was fifth last year, was fourth in 17:21 and Northern’s Dylan McCann fifth in 17:27.

Completing the boys team are Southern’s Christian Jordan, 17:31, sixth for the second straight year; Southern’s Drew Helbig, 17:34; Southern freshman Josiah Hebb, 17:38; Frankfort’s Derek Alt, 17:39 and Allegany’s Ben Fiscus, 17:41.

The Southern boys made Area meet history by placing all seven varsity runners in the top 10, with all seven standing on the podium to receive their All-AMAC awards. For Southern, it was the fourth AMAC title and sixth overall Area title.

Hannah Lipps

One one of the greatest cross country careers in Area history belongs to Hampshire’s Hannah Lipps, who won her third straight AMAC championship this fall on her way to the West Virginia Class AAA Region II title and a third-place finish in the State Championships.

Last season as a junior Lipps ran away from the field to win the Class AAA girls cross-country state championship at Cabell Midland High School and helped the Hampshire team to a sixth-place finish. She won with a time of 19:07.5 and had a margin of victory of nearly 20 seconds over runner-up Brooke Franklin of University, who finished in 19:26.2.

The week prior to that, Lipps won the West Virginia Region II title with a time of 20:09.8.

Lipps won every race she entered her junior year with the exception of one, the University High Meet in which she finished second.

Lipps finished third in the state as a sophomore, and set her personal record in the 5,000 meters as a freshman at 18:29.0.

This season in her senior year, she finished first in four races, including the AMAC and the Region Championships (19:24.0), before turning in her personal record 18:22.4 in the 5,000 meters to place third in the State Meet.

Jayden Judy

Freshman Jayden Judy gave the area running community a good look at the next wave of Hampshire cross country, turning in her top two performances in two of the biggest meets of the year.

Judy set her personal-record 5,000 of 20:47 with her second-place finish in the AMAC, then two weeks later finished second in the West Virginia Class AAA Region II Championships in 22:07.

She placed fourth in the Buffalo Wild Wings Stampede (22:27) and 11th in the Progressive Physical Therapy Invitational (22:28.4), before concluding her first varsity season at 21:57.3 in the Class AAA State Championships to place 46th.

Corinna Strietbeck

Frankfort’s Corinna Strietbeck placed third in the AMAC in 21:01. She was medalist in the Northampton Invitational (23rd PR 20:09), the Forest Festival (sixth), the Uniontown Invitational (12th) and the Progressive Physical Therapy Invitational (seventh).

Strietbeck is champion of the Frankfort Invitational, three-time All-PVC, finishing second this year; two-time All-AMAC and All-Region, finishing eighth. She placed at every Frankfort meet and finished 30th in 21:10.4 at a very muddy and competitive West Virginia AA State Meet.

“Corinna is a fantastic leader,” said Coach Woody Snoberger. “She is a really hard worker, both on the course as well as in the classroom. She is a fantastic example for our younger student-athletes to follow.

“She is a very smart racer and she ran a smart race at AMAC. She did not get caught up in the really fast start and moved her way up through the field as the race went on to finish third overall. Corinna is one of the strongest runners I have had in a long time —the longer the race goes the better she gets. She seems to get faster and faster as she gets further into the race.”

Faith Parandhamaia

Northern’s Faith Parandhamaia won four meets this year for Northern — the Mountain Ridge Invitational, the SSMAC Championships, the Pumpkin Run and the Husky Pride Classic. She was runner-up at the Broadford Invitational and placed fourth in the AMAC.

Parandhamaia finished fifth in the Maryland 1A West Region and seventh in the State Championships, running 21:08 at the Red, White and Blue Classic and 21:29 at the state meet. She also runs track and placed eighth in the 1600 meters last spring and was on the 4 x 800 relay team that finished fifth.

“There aren’t enough good things to say about Faith,” said Coach Jaron Hawkins. “She is a ferocious competitor and is fearless in the second half of races. It’s been an absolute joy to coach her, but I know she is ready for the next level and some lucky college coach will soon be getting a rare talent.”

Brooke Davis

Southern freshman Brooke Davis has six top five finishes and placed first in every meet for Southern. She was the first freshman to cross in the Maryland 1A State Meet, placing eighth. She placed fourth in the West Region.

In both of those races, Davis set personal records, her 21:34.7 in the state meet being her best 3-mile, and her 21:00.6 in the region being her best 5,000 meters.

“Brooke had an outstanding season,” said Coach Randy Storey. “The enthusiasm and energy she brings to practice and meets encourage the rest of her team to do their best. We look forward to watching Brooke play basketball this winter, that being her favorite sport.”

Kelsey Mowery

Hampshire senior Kelsey Mowery ran her best time of the season in the West Virginia AAA State Championships, placing 39th in 21:20.6. Prior to that she turned in her top finish of the season by placing third in the Region II Championships at 22:16.

Prior to the state meet, her season best came with her sixth-place finish in the AMAC at 21:28. She also finished seventh in the Buffalo Wild Wings Stampede.

Mowery established her personal record in the 5,000 as a sophomore at 19:23.8.

Catherine Wiley

Hampshire senior Catherine Wiley set her season record of 21:05.3 at the West Virginia State Championships to finish 36th, Prior to that she finished sixth in the Region Championships in 22:40.

Besides finishing seventh at the AMAC, Wiley was eighth at the Buffalo Wild Wings Stampede in 23:13.

She set her personal record in the 5,000 as a sophomore in 20:41.1 and her personal-best 3-miler (20:32.7) as a junior. 

Abby Beeman

In addition to placing eighth at the AMAC to earn all-conference, Frankfort junior Abby Beeman was a three-time All-PVC performer, finishing sixth this season in 26:53.1.

Beeman finished first in the first race of the season, posting 25:21 in a dual meet with Keyser. She also placed third in the Frankfort Invitational (23:58) and earned medalist at the Progressive Physical Therapy Invitational, finishing 24th in 23:30.4.

She placed 25th in the Region I Championships (23:04), set her season record of 20:42.7 at the Northampton Invitational, and established her personal record her sophomore season in 20:21.

“Abby is one of the toughest athletes I have had,” said Coach Snoberger. “This season she fought through injury issues all year, but was able to run one of her best races of the year at the AMAC championship to finish as an All-AMAC athlete. She was very aggressive in this race and made huge moves late in the race to secure her spot, out-kicking a few kids on the way.”

Danielle Davis

Hampshire’s Danielle Davis concluded her sophomore season in the Class AAA State Championships by setting her personal record of 21:37.8 to place 42nd. She reached the state meet by turning in a fourth-place finish in the Region II Championships in 22:30.

Following her ninth-place finish at the AMAC, she turned in a sixth-place finish (22:46) at the Buffalo Wild Wings Stampede. 

Bailee Upole

Northern junior Bailee Upole achieved personal records in her final two races of the season — 21:59 in the 5,000 to place 16th in the Maryland 1A West Region Championships, then 21:21 in the 3-mile to place sixth in the state in the 1A State Championships.

Her top finish of the season was second place in the Mountain Ridge Invitational (23:28), but she also had a pair of fourth-place finishes and a fifth-place finish. Upole was fourth in the SSMAC Championships (24:20.7) and in the Husky Pride Classic (22:52.5), and fifth in the Pumpkin Run (23:41).

Boys

Declan Horner

Southern’s Declan Horner won every area meet he competed in to highlight his senior season and one of the great cross country careers in area history.

After setting his season-record 15:32 in the 3-mile by winning the Interstate Classic in Clear Spring, he finished first in the 5,000 at the Mountain Ridge Invitational (18:35), the Broadford Invitational (17:01), the Progressive Physical Therapy Invitational (season record 16:13.2), the AMAC (16:59), the Buffalo Wild Wings Stampede (17:05), the Pumpkin Run (17:39) and the Husky Pride Classic (16:30).

In between, he placed 11th at the Oatlands Invitational, Leesburg, Va., in 16:20, and to start the season, he placed 51st in the Manhattan High School Invitational in Bronx, N.Y., turning in 13:23.4 in the only 2.5-mile race he ran.

As a junior, Horner reached the Maryland 1A State Meet by finishing second in the West Regional in 16:00, before turning in a 16:19 on the Hereford course the following week to place second, as the Rams finished in second place as a team. He also finished second in the Interstate (16:10) and the Progressive (16:22).

Every other race Horner ran that season, he won: the Forest Festival (18:21), the Mountain Ridge (17:10), the Broadford (16:49), the Buffalo Wild Wings (17:06), the AMAC (17:16), the Frank Keyser (15:25), the Pumpkin Run (18:13) and the Husky Pride Classic (17:27). 

Ryan Hebb

Senior Ryan Hebb finished in the top five in eight out of nine regular season meets for Southern, and placed first in the Maryland 1A West Region Meet (personal record 16:42.9) and second in the AMAC (17:00). He finished his season with a fourth-place finish in the State Championships in a 3-mile time of 16:55.6.

“Ryan is a driven young man who is a pleasure to coach,” said Coach Scott Winters. “He will do anything within his power to help his team succeed. He is a leader by example and is highly regarded by his teammates. I will dearly miss having Ryan as a part of our team but am excited for what his future will hold. I expect great things from Ryan in the future.”

Hebb began his season with a third-place finish in the Interstate Classic, turning in his season record 3-mile time of 16:37.7. He went on to finish second in the Mountain Ridge Invitational (18:37), the Broadford Invitational (17:08), the Buffalo Wild Wings Stampede (17:43.8), the Pumpkin Run (17:43) and the Husky Pride Classic (17:02.6).

He was third in the Progressive (16:54.9) and 29th in the Oatlands Invitational. 

Zachary Warnick

Southern senior Zachary Warnick set his personal record in the 5,000 meters with this third-place finish at the AMAC in 17:16. He also finished third in the Mountain Ridge Invitational (18:48), fourth at the Broadford (18:07) and sixth at the Pumpkin Run (18:30).

In the 3-mile, he placed fifth at the Interstate Classic with a personal record 17:30.

He placed 10th at the Progressive (17:48.8) and 18th at the West Region Championships (18:12.5), before finishing 28th in the state in 18:08.6.

Bryson Dolly

Senior Bryson Dolly turned in an outstanding year for Hampshire cross country, winning the West Virginia Class AAA Region II championship in a time of 17:42. He followed that with a 17:15.2 to place 24th in the Class AAA State Meet.

Dolly finished fourth in the AMAC (17:21), fifth in the Progressive Physical Therapy Invitational (17:23.9) and seventh in the Buffalo Wild Wings Stampede (18:26.4).

He turned in his personal record 17:05.5 at the Adidas Challenge in Cary, N.C. to place 15th, and was 26th in 17:13 at the Spiked Shoe Invitational in State College, Pa.

Dylan McCann

Northern junior Dylan McCann concluded his season with an 11th-place finish in the Maryland 1A State Meet at 17:31.6 to cut 40 seconds off his time from last year.

He placed first at the SSMAC Championships this season, fifth at the AMAC and 10th in the West Region. Last spring he finished eighth in the state in the 3,200 meters in track and field.

“Dylan is an exceptional athlete,” said Coach Jaron Hawkins. “He is a full-time soccer player so what he has done in cross country this year is rather amazing. Dylan possesses an ability to constantly get the most out of himself by pushing way beyond what any other athlete can or is willing to.”

Christian Jordan

Southern’s Christian Jordan finished his strong senior season in a strong way, placing fifth in the Maryland Class 1A State Championships 3-miler in 17:05.5. Previously, Jordan finished third in the West Region Championships, with a season-record 17:23.5 over 5,000 meters.

Jordan finished in the top 10 in every race he ran this year, with first-place finishes in the Progressive (18:13.2) and the Buffalo Wild Wings Stampede (19:09). He was fifth at the Broadford (18:16), sixth at the AMAC (17:31) and Husky Pride Classic (17:57.8), and ninth at the Pumpkin Run (19:03.)

He set his personal record in the 3-mile as junior, 16:40.3, as well as in the 5,000 at 17:18.7.

Drew Helbig

Southern sophomore Drew Helbig placed 14th in the 1A State Championships with a personal record 3-mile of 17:35.4. He qualified for the state meet by finishing fifth in the West Region Championships, tracking the 5,000 meters in a personal record 17:30.4.

He had fourth-place finishes in the 5,000 at the Mountain Ridge Invitational (18:52) and the Pumpkin Run (17:59), fifth place at the Husky Pride (17:46), seventh place at the AMAC (17:34) and eighth place at the Broadford (18:30). 

Helbig placed 12th at the Stampede (18:40.5), 14th at the Progressive (18:09.3), and set his personal record in the 2.5-mile of 14:45.2 at the Manhattan Invitational in Bronx, N.Y. 

Josiah Hebb

Southern freshman Josiah Hebb concluded his first varsity season with a 30th-place finish in the State Championships in 18:12 nine days after qualifying for the state meet with a seventh-place finish in the West Region Championships at 17:37.1.

Hebb’s personal record in the 3-mile was 17:54.4 when he finished 14th at the Interstate Classic. His personal record in the 5,000 is 17:31.3, a third-place finish at the Husky Pride Classic. He also finished third at the Pumpkin Run (17:55).

Hebb finished sixth at Mountain Ridge (19:21), eighth at the AMAC (17:38) and ninth at Broadford (18:31). He was 14th at the Stampede (18:55.4) and 22nd at the Progressive (18:26.2).

Derek Alt

Frankfort senior Derek Alt medaled at the Forest Festival Invitational, Frankfort Invitational, Uniontown Invitational, and the Progressive Physical Therapy Invitational. He was a two-time All-AMAC, All-PVC and All-Region runner, and ranks 11th all time in school history with a top performance of 17:05.

“Derek was a big part of our success this past season,” said Coach Juan Phillips. “He has a quality every coach wants from their athlete — he is a determined runner and does not settle for mediocrity.

“Derek was a strong team captain that led by example and determination. His leadership drove the team to qualifying for states and finishing in the top four at states. He challenges all those around him to strive to do better. Derek Alt represents the best of Frankfort High School.”

Ben Fiscus

Allegany senior Ben Fiscus started the year running a 17:49 and placing 11th at the Interstate Classic, then proceeded to run in the top five to 10 for the rest of the season.

He earned All-AMAC with a 10th-place finish and running his personal best for 5K at 17:41. He was also individual champ of the Allegany County Championships (18:02). He had a very strong race at the 1A West Regional, placing ninth (17:50.7), to help the team qualify for the state meet for the first time in several years.

“Ben was a great team leader,” said Coach Chris Biser. “Anytime I was busy and needed the team to do something, Ben ensured it would get completed and he did. He has been one of my best team captains and he seemed to absorb everything I was telling him. Ben was a great student-athlete to coach and will be greatly missed.”

Mike Burke is the sports editor at Cumberland Times-News. To reach him, call/text 304-639-5462, email mburke@times-news.com and follow him on Twitter.

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