NDHS cross country team builds tradition

MD-nd cross 2x-071515

Special to Dorchester Banner/Dave Ryan
North Dorchester High School cross country team Head Coach Mark Lowrie leads his runners by example, competing in races of his own. Eagles runners are getting ready for the fall 2015 season, set to begin on Sept. 1.

SHILOH — “North Dorchester High School [cross country] boys won a state championship in 1985,” current Head Coach Mark Lowrie said on Tuesday. It’s with an eye to that legacy that he and Coach Brian Davis re-started the team almost five years ago after a hiatus of about a decade.

Rebuilding that winning tradition has been part of Coach Lowrie’s goal in the years since, and the Eagles cross country team has come a long way. “We started with only seven runners,” Coach Lowrie said, as he remembered the first season.

Now with more than 30 runners having expressed an interest in joining or returning to the team, both boys’ and girls’ squads have plenty of talent to challenge their rivals – last season, the Eagles’ boys finished only one place behind much larger Cambridge-South Dorchester High School in the regional championships.

Coach Lowrie promotes not only athleticism among his runners, but also makes sure academics are not neglected. There is a mandatory study hall once a week for all team members, to see that grades don’t slip during the season.

The 2015 campaign will begin on Sept. 1 with a scrimmage against friendly rivals C-SD at the Henson Scout Reservation at 4 p.m. Then on Sept. 9 at 4 p.m., the team’s regular season gets underway with an away meet against 2A school North Caroline at Adkins Arboretum at 4 p.m.

Following that is a meet at C-SD’s Egypt Road course known as “The Jungle,” at 4 p.m. on Sept. 16.

Students who are taking part in off-season running include Joe Bates, Hailee Peters, Stephen Layton, Jacqueline Finnegan, Jayke Conner, Monica Loeffler, Bailey Lowe, Sierrah Lanahan, Hanna Smith, Destiny Davenport, Abbey DeCarlo, Megan Neal, Noe Cervantes, Amanda Tilghman, Jared Feldman, Anthony Harris, Kirsten Blades, Paige Weaver, Kendall Clough, Isaiah Brinsfield, Austin Loeffler and Erin Summey.

This season, the team also welcomes Brandon Pearce as a coach.

Dave Ryan is editor of the Dorchester Banner. He can be reached at dryan@newszap.com.

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