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B-A girls claim MAC cross country division

The Bellwood-Antis girls cross country team knew what they had to do at Morrisdale on Tuesday afternoon. Then the Lady Blue Devils (7-1 overall) went out and did it, outracing West Branch 24-32 and Philipsburg-Osceola 24-34 to move to 7-0 in the Mountain Athletic Conference to claim the Division 4 championship for the second time in three years.
“The girls knew they had to beat both West Branch and Philipsburg-Osceola for the championship,” explained Bellwood-Antis coach Julia Roseborough. “Sarah Bell is really starting to come on strong for us. We had a good team effort, despite missing one of our top five runners. Kelley Killinger wasn’t feeling well, but hung in there and did her job. Emily O’Shea has been steady all year, and Becca Colyer ran much better yesterday. We also got a strong finish on what was a tough course from our two freshmen Erin Morrissey and Allison Derr, who picked up their tempo at the end of the race to finish fifth and sixth for us.
The Lady Blue Devils placed four in the top 10. Bell finished second overall to Philipsburg-Osceola’s Sarah Kitko in a time of 23:20, Killinger was fifth in 25:20, O’Shea was seventh in 26:37, and Colyer was eighth in 26:38.
Morrissey ran a 27:36 race and Derr was just behind in 27:33.
Kitko finished the race in 22:43, while Chandra Murray was the first girl across the finish line for West Branch, finishing third overall in 23:41.
The B-A girls also won the MAC Division 4 championship in 2004.
The Bellwood-Antis boys cross country squad defeated the Philipsburg-Osceola boys, but dropped a 33-23 race to West Branch.
Bellwood-Antis junior Ben Hatch won the boys race in 18:39, but West Branch placed four boys in the next five places to take control of the race.
Blue Devil Cooper Campbell broke through the pack of West Branch runners to finish seventh in 20:35, followed by teammates Jamie Rimmey who was eighth in 20:35, and Tyler Hunter who was ninth in 20:48.
Garett Wyland rounded out the five scorers for Bellwood-Antis with a 13th place in 21:30, and John Wolfe and Corey Miller were the sixth and seventh runners for the B-A boys.
“The boys ran really well on a difficult course. West Branch has run just a little ahead of our boys in all of the Invitationals this year. They have a pack of five runners who basically run together. We need to break up their pack. We were able to break into the pack ahead of their fifth place runner, but that was not enough. Ben Hatch looked very, very good in winning the race on their course. Cooper Campbell, who is just a freshman was our second runner, and the others had a good effort. We will get another shot at them at the MAC Conference Meet.”
Bellwood-Antis, Tyrone, Altoona, Hollidaysburg and Bishop Guilfoyle will run in the Mountain Athletic Conference Cross Country Regional Meet at Tyrone on Tuesday.