Who to Watch
Since many of last yearís top runners have been lost to graduation, most of the top spots in the WCAC Championship are open for new competitors to leave their marks. Well, except for the first place spot. Thatís reserved for Bishop OíConnellís Megan Fitzpatrick, the queen of WCAC distance running for the past two years who should have no trouble earning her second consecutive league title. Though she has raced much less this season than in years past, Fitzpatrick is still leagues ahead of her competition, which includes several standout performers, including Holy Cross sophomore Chinny Asher. A dual-sport athlete, Asher has raced only twice this season, but a fourth-place finish at the Georgetown Prep Classic indicates she should be ready to race on Saturday. Similar in talent to Asher is Paul VIís Lizzie Greene, the 2nd place finisher at the VA State Catholic Championships. Greene has a history of peaking well at the end of the season and should finish in the top three, but sheíd better watch out for a slew of other runners, like OíConnellís Nicole Carty and Claire Whitesell or Good Counselís Katie Koenig, who all have the ability to make things very interesting this Saturday morning.
Teams to Beat
OíConnell. That pretty much sums it up. The 2007 team champion only graduated two runners from last yearís team which trounced the competition last year, and the addition of standout freshman Nicole Carty makes OíConnell very well-equipped to handle the graduation-depleted teams of the WCAC.
The battle for second should be interesting, though. Paul VI looks like a strong bet to finish second after placing second at the VA State Catholic Championships this past Tuesday, but should they falter, Bishop Ireton might be able to sneak in. At that meet, Paul VI placed four runners ahead of Iretonís number one, but the Cardinalsí tight pack running saw seven runners finish ahead of Paul VIís fifth. Montgomery Countyís Good Counsel could be in the mix, but the Falcons also suffer from depth issues, and might be unable to overcome the Ireton pack.