|2001 Season Preview|
|Division III: The Division three team and individual race really won't have much to do with the NEO this year. In the individual race you have to look to Ordway and Sunni Olding of Minster as the front runners. In the team race, it looks to be Minster again. In the area, look to McDonald to be the best NEO girls team in DIII and also feature on of the best runners in Jen Wenhold. Pymatuming Valley could also field another good team.
My Preseason Picks: team- Minster ind- Sunni Olding, Minster
Division II: Now it gets interesting. This Division looks to be a heyday for the NEO girls. Beaumont, CVCA, Walsh, and Revere all look good for the coming year. They will likely have to go against Huron a bit to the West as the main competitor. The cream of this crop is Beaumont. Led by Maggie Infeld, a sophomore looking for a solid second year. Infeld is backed by a very strong supporting cast and is in no way a one-woman team. Dobrowski, Reynolds, and the rest of the top 7 will all be tough to beat.
CVCA on the other hand is not that far behind. Let by Amy Arnold, they will look to Carrie Lawver to back up her strong track campaign with a good XC season. They will also look to a newcomer to the XC scene, Schuck. Schuck ran track last year and was on CVCA's 4x800 team. Running in her first XC season, she should break 20 and will help CVCA battle Beaumont for supremecy.
The other two teams mentioned were Walsh and Revere. These two team are lacking in a front runner to cancel out Arnold and Infeld and are therefore behind the other two. Walsh's girls did not really have a solid summer of training as I've talked to several of them that hadn't run a step by mid-July. That' doesn't bode well for their program.
My Picks: team- Beaumont Ind- Amy Arnold, CVCA
Division I: More good news for the NEO Scene. Strongsville should win DI and Jackson looks incredibly strong heading into this season. A few other teams to keep your eye on would be Amherst, Lakewood up top, and Magnificat, Hudson, and Mentor as fringe teams.
Strongsville's Kelly Ardelean must fulfill her potential this season. Ardelean was a bit under the weather at last season's State XC Meet, but ran incredibly tough anyway. She should have tons of support this year and if the Mustangs are gong to win a State Title; this is the year.
Jackson will ride Ashley Hmiel, and a rededicated Jessica Fleming to see how far they go. If they can avoid a repeat of last year's disciplinary problems, they can possibly hang with Strongsville.
Lakewood and Amherst will be tough. You can never discount a team with a past Foot Locker Qualifier; which Lakewood has in Michelle Sikes. And Amherst is balanced with Britnee Barris leading the charge. Hudson, Magnificat and Mentor are young and could come together towards the end of the season.
My Picks: team- Strongsville ind-Emily King, Dublin Coffman