Lady Knights’ experience will lead the way for cross country squad

GALION — Northmor’s girls cross country team will hit courses throughout the area with hopes of capturing the inaugural Knox-Morrow Athletic Conference title in 2017.

“The conference will be very competitive, as usual. Mount Gilead, Centerburg and Fredericktown will be tough, but we hope to stay healthy and be able to compete with these teams,” says girls head coach Mark Yaussy.

Yaussy is entering his 20th season as the Golden Knights head coach and brings with him an overall record of 143-24.

He returns most of his roster from a season ago. That squad had six state qualifiers at the Division III level. The key name not returning this season is Kristen Duryea. Kristen graduated last spring and was an all-conference member, an all-district member and was one of the six that qualified for state from Northmor.

In total, the Lady Knights will have a roster that returns 11 letter winners from 2016. Leading the way will be a trio of seniors: Brooke Bennett, Sammie Grogg and Viv Cutrupi. Bennett was an all-conference member and a state qualifier last season. Sam Peters joins the aforementioned trio of seniors as the other upper-classmen on the squad. Peters had a banner year in ‘16 as well, earning an all-conference nod, an all-district nod and running in the state meet.

The sophomores that will be back for Yaussy and the Knights bring a wealth of experience, as well as honors.

Juliana Ditullio, Jessica Duryea and Maddie Jordan all took home all-MOAC awards and all-district awards as freshmen a season ago. That trio also participated in the state meet last fall. Other sophomores hitting the courses as returning letter winners for Northmor in ‘17 are: Frankie Cutrupi, Brooke Huntsman and Carolyn McGauley. In addition to the experienced youth that the Lady Knights possess, look for newcomers Julia Kanagy, Kristie Wright and Olivia Goodson to be running with the varsity girls this season.

On Monday, Aug. 21, the Northmor squad will kick-off their season with their own invitational. The regular season will conclude on Oct. 14 at Fredericktown where the Lady Knights will battle it out for the K-MAC title.

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By Chad Clinger

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