On a cold and rainy fall afternoon, Newark Charter cross-country runner Alanna Rhodes spent less time on the 2.1-mile cross-country trail at White Clay Creek State Park than any NCS Patriot middle school girl ever had before.
Rhodes, a seventh-grader, ran a 14:18, besting the previous school record set in 2018 by 31 seconds. What made the accomplishment even more impressive is that it is Rhodes’ first year participating in the sport and the Oct. 3 meet was her first on the course.
“It was just enormous,” head coach Keith Miller said of the accomplishment. “Her performance makes her the fastest middle school girl in Newark Charter’s history, so it’s worth celebrating.”
Miller said to the best of his knowledge, the course record of 14:10 was set by a runner from Springer Middle in 2019.
“Alanna’s next goal is to take that record, hoping to run under 14 minutes by the end of the year,” Miller said. “Alanna is a strong and smooth runner with incredible focus and determination. The sky is the limit for her in cross country. She’s a lot of fun to coach.”
Turnovers, penalties doom Newark football
Lake Forest (2-1, 1-1) traveled to New Castle County for a Saturday morning game for the third time in five weeks and as it had the previous two, went back south over the canal with a double-digit win.
Early turnovers and penalties put the Yellowjackets in an early hole and two Spartan pick-sixes midway through the fourth quarter thwarted a comeback attempt and sealed a 53-24 win for the Spartans.
“We struggled on Saturday,” coach Jody Russell said. “We made too many mistakes to overcome. Penalties and turnovers hurt us on both sides of the ball. We need to circle the wagons this week for homecoming.
Jayden Smith was a bright spot for Newark, hauling in five passes for 112 yards and a touchdown. He also returned a kickoff 75 yards for a score, and Damian Wright added two rushing touchdowns. On the defensive side of the ball, Nasir Dawkins had a fumble recovery and Smith, Wright, Dajour White and Samir Rollins each had five tackles.
Newark (3-1 overall, 2-1 district) hosts Conrad (0-4, 0-3) on Saturday at 11 a.m.
Local gridiron roundup
Saint Mark’s suffered its first loss of the season, 28-14, to Archmere Academy. The Spartans led at the half but were outscored 21-0 in the second. Keigan Barnes scored on a 29-yard run for one of the Spartans’ touchdowns, and Chase Patalano hooked up with Jude Campbell though the air for the other. Saint Mark’s (5-1, 2-0) celebrates homecoming against Concord on Friday night at 7 p.m.
Red Lion Christian Academy rolled to a 60-0 win over the Early College School at DSU. Evan Budinger completed 14 of 16 passes for 301 yards and six touchdowns, including two each to Seth McGroerty and Kyle Manley. Red Lion (3-2, 2-1) will try to win its third straight at Lake Forest (4-1, 1-1) on Saturday at 11:30 a.m.
Hodgson dropped its fifth straight game, falling 44-18 to Howard (6-0, 3-0). Jace Hawkins opened up the scoring with a 2-yard rushing touchdown, but Howard answered quickly with two scores of its own. Marlon Sparks hauled in two touchdown passes (27, 44) from Xavier Brown for the other Silver Eagles’ scores. Hodgson (1-5, 0-2) plays at St. Georges (1-4, 0-2) on Saturday at 10:30 a.m.
Glasgow lost to Wilmington Friends, 44-6, with the lone Dragons’ score coming on a Jayden Brown 23-yard pass from Nahzeere Gardner. Glasgow (1-4, 0-2) travels to St. Andrews (2-3, 2-1) on Saturday for a noon kickoff.
Christiana fell behind early and never recovered, falling to Conrad 48-28. Khamir Dargan scored two touchdowns on runs of 65 and 46 yards. Nyzair Love returned a kickoff 60 yards for another score and Alexander Ozor hauled in a 16-yard pass from Rahlier Rankin for the final touchdown. Christiana (0-5, 0-2) plays at Tatnall (2-3, 1-1) on Friday at 7 p.m.
Caravel Academy (5-0, 2-0) remained undefeated with a 42-6 win over Odessa (3-2, 3-0). The Bucs host Woodbridge Friday night at 7.
UD announces Hall of Fame class
Seven outstanding former Blue Hens will be inducted into the Delaware Athletics Hall of Fame at an invitation-only induction ceremony on Nov. 4 at the Whitney Athletic Center.
Two of the inductees are Chad Kuhl (baseball) and Lindsay Prettyman (cross country, track & field), who grew up in Bear and Newark, respectively. Kuhl was an All-Colonial Athletic Association selection as a junior and was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the ninth round of the 2013 draft. He is currently pitching for the Colorado Rockies. Prettyman made her mark at Delaware as a record-setting cross-country runner and track & field distance star as well as an award-winning scholar.
Other inductees include Ruly Carpenter (benefactor, Board of Trustees), Mariano Stalloni (football, track & field), Pam Hohler (track & field), Sidney Haugabrook (football) and B.J. Ferguson (softball and women’s tennis head coach).
The inductees will be honored at halftime of the football game on Nov. 5. Complete bios for the inductees can be found at bluehens.com.
In my opinion only
I hated the winner-take-all MLB play-in games but love the best of three format with all three games at the higher-seeded team’s stadium. It was a fun three days of baseball playoffs. I’ll leave my 8:37 p.m. first-pitch rant for another time.
Wrapping it up
Caravel Academy (No. 5), Appoquinimink High (9) and Salesianum (11) were all ranked in last week’s United Coaches Soccer Region IV poll. All three teams have players from the local area.
Until next time … have a great sports week!
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