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Bobcat, Pioneer runners take first in Stafford

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Bobcat, Pioneer runners take first in Stafford

Both teams from western Prince William County competing at the Potomac and Brooke Point Invitational indoor track and field meet in Stafford County this weekend managed to bring back a handful of first-place titles, with Battlefield besting Patriot overall five golds to two.
The Battlefield girls also outperformed their male counterparts, winning 60.5 points to the boys' 48 while also capturing first place in four events compared to one.
Junior Galissia Cause, who won the national Emerging Elite title this summer in the discus throw, led off the program with a shot put throw of just over 39 feet that ended up good enough for first place, according to statistics provided by Milestat.com.
Her teammate Jessica Rolle captured the top spot in the 55 meter dash with a run of 7.53 seconds.
Mid-distance running also turned out to be a specialty for Battlefield as veteran Ellison Grove won the 500 meter dash (1:17.02) and the 4x400 meter relay team delivered the girls' final gold.
On the boys side, Alex Merritt captured his team's only victory on the day. He shaved 0.16 seconds off his seed time to win with a run of 7.97 seconds.
Patriot produced one winner each among the boys and girls.
Shannon Blackstone outpaced her seed time by more than 16 seconds during her performance in the 1,600 meter run, grabbing the gold at 5:40.06.
Josh Small earned the same recognition in the doubly long 3,200 meter run even while running a few seconds behind his pace time.
His 10:30.11 run still put him on top of the scoreboard for the 28th event of the day at Brooke Pointe High School regardless.
According to Patriot head coach Adam Daniels, it's not outright wins that will end up determining how well the Pioneers keep up with Battlefield this season.
"I think it's going to come down to depth," he said.
Points are rewarded typically for the first six placers in any event, ranging from 10 points for the top spot to one point for sixth place.
Patriot placed runners in the top six 25 times on Saturday and so far has qualified nine runners for regions (five girls, four boys).
Even when Blackstone won the 1,600 meter run, teammate Meredith Holland gave the Pioneers an extra six-point boost by clocking in third place (5:45.35), just 5.29 seconds off the mark.
While both Battlefield and Patriot had star runners out due to the end of cross country season, the two teams both can reasonably expect, at the end of the season, to be facing off for the district title.
After that, expect a small but noticeable contingent of western Prince William athletes to appear at states, assuming injuries do not hold back each school's best.
"I think we're at where we want to be," said Daniels.
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