by Cliff Mehrtens

DAVIDSON – Davidson Day cross country runner Melissa Zammitti stayed with the pack for the first half of the N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association 2A championship race Oct. 26.

When she decided to break loose, none of the other 136 runners came close to catching the talented 8th-grader.

Zammitti beat the nearest competitor by 27 seconds, covering the 5,000-meter course in Cary in 19 minutes, 41 seconds.

“I thought it was one of my best races,” Zammitti said. “We had a preparation walk through the course the day before the race. That way I could get an idea of what the course was like and how I wanted to run it. This whole season I was looking forward to the state meet and preparing for it. Last year, I ran a 20:01 (and finished fourth) and this year my time was much better. My race strategy was better, too.”

Davidson Day’s Hanna Goyette, a sophomore, finished 10th in 21:25, helping the Patriots to a third-place finish. Asheville Christian won the team championship.

Strong showing for Lake Norman Charter at state meet

KERNERSVILLE – The Lake Norman Charter boys cross country team finished second in the state at the N.C. 1A meet Nov. 3 at Beeson Park, and the Knights were third in the girls’ race.

Raleigh Bishop McGuinness won the boys and girls state championships.

“Overall, our runners ran very well,” Lake Norman Charter coach Craig
Zamiara said. “They knew they had to get out quick and be aggressive to have a shot at winning.  In the end, we had six personal records set and all the other runners were very close to their personal best times as well.”

Lake Norman Charter’s Matt Panza, a junior, ran the 5,000-meter course in 16:46 to finish sixth. Teammate Nathan Kemper, a freshman, ran 16:53 to finish ninth. Both earned all-state honors by finishing in the top 10.

In the girls’ race, Lake Norman Charter’s Sarah Hardin, a senior, broke her school record by finishing in 19:32. She was in fourth place among 128 female runners, which earned her all-state honors.

Lake Norman Charter’s Vicki Kohlwey, a sophomore, ran 20:15 to finish 10th. She too was all-state.

The Knights boys entered the state meet after winning the regional event for the third straight year. Lake Norman Charter’s girls tied Lincoln Charter in the regional race, but finished second on a tiebreaker.

Ellington bypasses state meet

DAVIDSON –  Malia Ellington, a sophomore at Community School of Davidson, bypassed the 1A state meet to fulfill an invitation to USA Triathlon’s Junior Elite Camp at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado.

Ellington won the 1A Midwest regional in 19:18 a week earlier. Community School of Davidson’s Marissa Lundsten, a freshman, was seventh in the state meet. She finished the race in 19:39.