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FLS Varsity brings you the scores, stats and stories from Fredericksburg-area high school sports.

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CROSS-COUNTRY: Wildcats’ Angers shows her potential

THE PLAINS—Mountain View cross-country coach Dave Davis has been aiming for a breakthrough from junior standout Jordan Angers.

Davis said Angers has been a “pretty good, competitive runner” in his program, and she even captured the Conference 15 championship two weeks ago.

But Davis has wanted to see more. He’s believed that once Angers’ confidence blossomed, her high school career would, too.

Davis witnessed Angers take her performance up a notch Friday morning in the 5A state championships at Great Meadow.

Angers delivered a second-place performance, as she was the highest boys or girls finisher from the Fredericksburg area in the six races on Friday.

“I’ve been telling her that she can run with these people,” Davis said. “She’s got to get that deer-in-the-headlights look out of her system and realize she’s pretty good. Once she realizes she’s pretty good, she can do all the things we need her to do.”

Angers completed her race in 18:45. She was well behind first-place Katherine Benfer of team champion Mills Godwin (18:23), but she was still thrilled with her showing. She finished third in the 5A–North Regionals a week ago.

“Last week I had a bad race, but this week was a lot better,” Angers said. “I was more mentally prepared. It’s all mental.”

The top 15 individuals earned all-state recognition. Groups 6A and 4A also held their championships at Great Meadow Friday.

Colonial Forge senior Megan Rebholz finished eighth in the 6A girls competition, but she was passed in the home stretch by three runners. The Eagles placed seventh as a team.

“The exact same thing happened to me here at Octoberfest,” Rebholz said of a strong start, but slow finish. “That ending just seemed so long to me. I kicked too early, then realized how long it is, and I’m like ‘Oh man.’”

Stafford senior Joey Abbatiello can relate. Abbatiello was second early on in the 6A boys race, but finished 13th.

Abbatiello said he immediately realized a quick burst at the beginning was “unwise,” but there was no turning back. He collapsed to the ground at the end of the race before collecting himself.

“I was sort of like ‘If I go out [fast] and do well I’ll look like a hero, but if I go out and die I’ll still look brave,” Abbatiello said. “I’d rather be brave than someone who lays in the pack and kicks it in at the last second.”

King George senior Miranda Green rebounded from a tough 4A–North meet to earn all-state honors. Green placed ninth to lead the Foxes to a seventh-place team finish in 4A.

“I kept telling myself all week, ‘I’m going to win,’” Green said. “If I tell myself I’m going to win, I’ll at least come in the top 10.”

North Stafford’s girls earned the best team finish among area programs on the day. The Wolverines placed fifth in 5A. Sophomore Brittany McGraw narrowly missed all-state by placing 18th. Junior Hannah Field was 21st. McGraw said the Wolverines were motivated when the website predicted they’d finish 11th out of 12 teams.

“We wanted to pass as many teams as we could, and we thought we could get by a few,” McGraw said. “But oh my God, I thought no way we’d get fifth. This is awesome.”

The 3A, 2A and 1A meets will be held today at Great Meadow.