The Eagles of Milton began their 2012 campaign with a trip to Clinton Farms Nature Preserve in Douglasville for the Bob Blastow/Early Bird Invitational and came away with four team victories and a pair of new school records.
Varsity Girls Dominant in Victory
Milton entered the meet as the pre-season No. 4 ranked All-Class and No. 2 ranked AAAAAA team, proving their mettle by easily dispatching 14 schools on the way to victory. The Lady Eagles (64 points) beat back No. 5 ranked All-Class Landmark Christian (No. 1 ranked A-Private, Fairburn) by 39 points. Cross-town rival Centennial finished a distant third (151 points).
Senior tri-captain Annie Kelly led the way in big-time fashion. Her overall win in 17:55 was a new school record by one minute and is one of the fastest times run in the last few years in the entire state of Georgia. Her teammates also ran fast and close to secure the first-place trophy. Senior tri-captain Maddie Butzer (13th-19:30), sophomore Amy Ruiz (14th-19:47) and senior Jacqueline Mahoney (17th-19:56) followed with new top-10 Milton all-time performances and solidified the win for Milton.
Varsity Boys Led by Record-Setting Race
The Eagles also came into the meet highly ranked (No. 4 All-Class and No. 2 in AAAAAA) and took on the No. 1 ranked All-Class team from McIntosh (Peachtree City) and came up short by just 15 points (53-68). Milton’s runner-up finish out of 16 schools also included an 18-point margin over seventh ranked All-Class Woodward Academy (College Park).
Leading the way for the Eagles was the new school record set by Nate Riech. Riech’s 15:46 broke the old record by 30 seconds and was good for third in the race. No Milton runner had run a sub-16 minute since 2000. The Eagles then brought home three runners with top-10 all time performances in school history to snarl the second-place trophy. Senior Miles Dayoub (8th-16:15), senior tri-captain Alex Marshall (12th-16:25) and freshman Brad Bannister (21st-16:37) all ran personal bests to secure the runner-up spot.
JV Girls Easily Beat 20 Schools
The Lady Eagles put their 5 scoring runners in the top-15 places to easily capture the victory over 20 scoring schools. Milton’s 66-point margin of victory (51 points) easily out-paced John’s Creek (2nd-117 points) and Lassiter (3rd-133 points).
Leading the way for the Lady Eagles was sophomore Juanita Pardo (3rd-21:07) and was followed by sophomore Hallie Howell (9th-21:32) and senior Olivia Koerner (10th-21:34). Junior’s Kim Toscano (14th-22:09) and Addie Luxton (15th-22:12) rounded out the victory.
JV Boys Take 8 of Top 13 Places to Win
Milton scored a low-point total of 26 points to easily win the race over 26 scoring schools. Eight runners in the top-13 places made the Eagles the easy team champions.
Leading the way to a 3,4,5,6 place finish was senior Jammer Howell in a personal best (17:08). Freshman Clay Marshall fought off a serious challenger that was eventually disqualified to capture 4th (17:14). Seniors Tom Jurgens (17:23) and Ben Blizzard (17:30) followed and senior Bobby Ashcom rounded out the scoring in 8th (17:38).
Open Girls Fall to Gladiators, Open Boys Win by 65 Points
The Lady Eagles faced a stiff challenge from John’s Creek in the girls open race and came up short (47-61) to the Gladiators. Fourteen scoring teams competed. Leading the way for Milton were freshman Riley Burr (8th-23:20) and junior Katie Robinson (9th-23:36).
Milton rebounded and easily won the boy’s open race with a 65-point win over runner-up Lakeside-Dekalb (25-90). The Eagles put 6 runners in the top-8 places with sophomore Conner Greisinger (3rd-18:14) and freshman Jack Bluth (4th-18:16) at the front.