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Megan Bertolette and Will Staab Compete In Cross Country State Championship

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by Audrey McClatchie

This brisk Saturday morning, November 11, Hereford High School hosted the Cross Country State Championship. Walkersville’s Megan Bertolette and Will Staab competed in the 2A division alongside teams and individual qualifiers from all over Maryland. Many other team mates came to support and cheer them on.

“The top 25 make it to states,” explained team captain and senior Abby Engle, “it just shows how hard they’ve worked.”

All their team mates conveyed confidence that Bertolette and Staab would do great in the race.

“I’m really excited to see Meg run because she works really hard,” said sophomore Morgan Carter. “She definitely deserves it and I know she’ll do well.”

Senior Grant Rasband added, “I am very good friends with Will and I’m very proud of him, how much he’s worked.”

Even though it is an accomplishment in itself to make it to States, each still had anticipation for the event.

“I’m nervous to face the challenge because it is all hills,” admitted Bertolette, “but I also feel prepared because I’ve run it before and we’ve trained very hard for hills.”

Staab commented, “I think I’m gonna do well because we practice on hills a lot, and I feel like I’ll be able to beat most of the people that aren’t as practiced.”

Mother of Megan, Leslie Bertolette expressed her pride, “She’s been working really hard trying to improve her times this season, which she has compared to last season. We’ll see how it goes!”

As the gun fired and the runners began the three miles, fans screamed and cheered, holding up posters and cut outs.

Bertolette finished in 20:17 making 10th place overall. Staab ended with a time of 17:38, placing 49th overall.

“I feel really good, and really happy, but very very very very tired,” Bertolette said with a laugh, “We were better prepared for the hills, so that was easier to conquer. And I improved by about 30 seconds!”

Staab, a little less enthusiastic stated, “I didn’t really anticipate getting lost in how many people there were, so I did not do as well as I thought.”

Both runners gave it their all and had great placings as their coach agreed, “Meg and Will work so hard. When it’s time to push, they push themselves, and so they’re here because of that. They work hard everyday, and it shows.”

Be sure to congratulate Bertolette and Staab on their excellent finish to a season!