BOYS CROSS COUNTRY McDonald edges rival Maplewood

The Blue Devils came away with a 39-41 verdict to cop the district championship.
BAZETTA -- Give this round to McDonald.
The Blue Devil boys cross country team edged rival Maplewood 39-41 to finish first at Saturday's Division III District Championship at the Trumbull County Fairgrounds.
"It was a heck of a day for McDonald cross country," said Blue Devil coach Chris Rupe after McDonald also won the girls district title. "Our goal was to make sure we got to regionals. We didn't talk about Maplewood. We knew it would be us or them."
Maplewood won the majority of the races earlier in the season but has been pushed by McDonald lately.
"We've gone back and forth all season but we've been a little bit back the past few weeks," said Maplewood coach Ted Rupe, whose brother coaches McDonald. "We had a couple injury problems but everyone seems to be getting healthy. Right now we're just trying to get to the next level."
Moser wins: Maplewood's Paul Moser took first with a time of 17:00.1 to finish eight seconds ahead of McDonald's Matt Isenberg. Springfield Local's David Mealey took third (17:11.4), and Maplewood's Dave Pykare (17:26.2) and John Palmer (17:28.1) rounded out the top five.
"I'm hurting," Moser said after the race. "That race is so tough. You get out there in the open and all you've got are negative thoughts. It feels great knowing [Isenberg] is back there. I just kept going. McDonald keeps pushing our team and we just pack it in tight as we can and go."
McDonald has qualified for state the past two years, but Chris Rupe said he has a long way to go to match Maplewood.
"We're at different points in our tradition," he said. "I think Maplewood has been [to state] 13 years in a row. We're feeling good about where we're at. We kind of came in knowing as long as everything went OK, we'd come in and make it to regionals."
LaBrae took third with 139 points, South Range was fourth with 147 points and Rootstown took fifth with 155 points. The top five teams advance to Saturday's regional at Boardman High School. The top 15 individuals not on a qualifying team also advance.
Division II: Cardinal Mooney entered the Division II district race knowing they would have a tough time beating Akron St. Vincent, St. Mary.
The Cardinals didn't repeat as district champs, but the 56-71 margin was much closer than last week's Sim Earich meet at the fairgrounds when the Second-place Irish beat fifth-place Mooney 80-208.
Senior Anthony Mion (16:29.5) and sophomore Matt Buzek (16:35 finished 1-2 for the Irish. Mooney's Joe Taylor shaved a minute off last week's time to finish third (16:44.0).
"The course was still a little slow, but it was better than last week," Taylor said. "There were some gusts [of wind] out by the barns. Our team ran excellent and we all ran pretty close to PR's [personal records]."
Others: Mooney sophomore Dan Finnerty finished eighth (17:57.8), Eric Moss took 11th (18:08.8), Ben Garchar was 23rd (18:42.5) and Tom Driscoll was 26th (18:54.0).
"Dan Finnerty ran a super race. It was his best race of the year," said Cardinal coach Adrian Mangino. "We improved our times from last week and I'm happy we qualified for regionals."
Southeast finished third with 123 points, Girard was fourth with 136 and Struthers was fifth with 144. Champion's Ryan Petrick took fourth place with a time of 17:16.2 and West Branch's Matt Scott was fifth (17:53.0).