Leasure, Tollett lead All T-L?CC team

The 2012 prep cross country season is a thing of the past.

However, the honors and recognition for area harriers continue to pour in after another impressive season.

The All Times Leader Cross Country team honors 13 of the area’s premier runners along with one of the most highly successful coaches.

Shadyside senior Tara Tollett and St. John Central senior Corey Leasure have both been named captains of the squad, while St. Clairsville’s Tony Ciroli is the coach of the year.

Here’s a capsule look at the honorees:

TARA TOLLETT, Shadyside – No matter if it’s on the track or on the grass, this Lady Tiger senior just continues to get it done.

Tollett put the finishing touches on a brilliant prep cross country career with a seventh-place finish in the Division III state meet last weekend. Tollett was the regional champion the week prior in Pickerington and was third in the district meet. She was an all-OVAC performer and also earned Division III Eastern District Athlete of the Year.

The Ohio University commit was the 2012 Division III State 3200 meter run runnerup.

“I believe Tara’s determination and self-discipline are her best qualities as a distance runner,” said first-year Shadyside head coach Stu Rynkievich. “She possesses all of the tools to remain a solid distance runner at the college level. Her competitive nature and intelligence will help her success as she moves forward. She’s certainly left her mark on the Ohio Valley and state of Ohio as one of the top female distance runners.”

COREY LEASURE, St. John Central – This Irish senior put forth one of his best campaigns in his final prep season for Coach Jeremy Midei’s squad.

Leasure earned all-Ohio acclaim at last week’s Division III state meet by virtue of his 25th overall place finish. He was sixth in the regional and finished second in the district meet. At the conference meet, Leasure was fifth and won the Class A/AA meet in the process. His personal best time of 16:01 ranks third best in SJC history and he’s also been recognized twice as academic all-Ohio.

“Corey is the quintessential student-athlete – great kid, extremely coachable and very talented,” Midei said. “You know he’s going to give you his best effort whether it’s practice or a race. Corey’s one of the all-time great runners at St. John and I believe he’s going to have a monster track season.”

FALLON DOYLE, St. John Central – This Lady Irish standout picked up right where she left off as a freshman and put forth another brilliant season for Midei’s team.

Doyle earned all-Ohio for the second straight season, finishing 11th in the Division III meet last weekend. She was the district champion and finished third at the regional en route to the state meet. Doyle was also the fourth-place finisher at the OVAC meet and runnerup in the small-school division.

“Fallon is truly a joy to coach,” Midei said. “Her attitude toward running is infectious: Fal’s the kind of person who get excited when she finds her mileage is higher than she expected. On top of all that, she has every physical attribute you’d want in a distance runner. She’s going to be exciting to watch the next couple of years.”

SUNSHINE WRENN, Martins Ferry – This Lady Riders’ senior is one of the area’s most fierce competitors regardless if it’s on the cross country course or on the track.

For Coach Chrissy Lewis’ Lady Riders’ CC squad, Wrenn enjoyed another impressive campaign.

Wrenn qualified to another state meet by virtue of her ninth-place showing at the regional meet. She was 12th in the district and 10th overall at the OVAC to lead the Lady Riders.

She was an all-OVAC, all-OVCCL and all-district performer this past season.

“Sunshine has become an incredible workout runner,” Lewis said. “I still don’t believe she’s touched her potential in a race. A college coach is going to find a gem in her. I will be very sad to see Sunshine graduate.”

JAMIE TRUCHAN, Martins Ferry – This Lady Riders’ sophomore fought through a half season’s worth of significant pain and never let it slow her down.

Truchan battled what Lewis believes to be a stress fracture and still found her way to the Division III state meet as well as a host of other accomplishments during the course of the season.

Truchan was ninth in the district and then posted her best time of 20-minutes to qualify for the state meet.

Truchan was also named all-OVAC, all-OVCCL and all-Eastern District.

“The last few weeks were terrible (because of the pain), but Jamie was still able to accomplish a lot,” Lewis said. “I am so excited to see what she does in the next two years.”

JULIANA MADZIA, St. Clairsville – This Lady Red Devils’ senior had a brilliant final season for Coach Tony Ciroli’s charges this fall.

Madzia earned her first all-Ohio finish with a 20th place run in last week’s Division II state cross country meet. Madzia had an impressive postseason en route to the state by finishing fourth at the district and seventh in the regional. She was eighth in the OVAC meet.

“Juliana really came on strong at the end of the season,” Ciroli said. “She’s been the epitome of a senior leader. She’s helped our freshman make the adjustment to high school cross country and has continued to make improvements for herself. I’m very proud of all she’s accomplished and how far she’s come. I couldn’t think of a better way for her to end her senior season than a personal record and all-Ohio finish at the state meet.”

AMY CASTLE, St. Clairsville – This senior was destined for a huge season before she was bitten by the mono bug, which cost her two weeks of training and racing and proved to be too much to overcome in the regional.

Castle was off to a brilliant start. She won the Buckeye 8 Championship in September, but finished 33rd at the OVAC. She came back in the district and finished sixth to advance to the regional, but finished 25th.

“Amy has unselfishly given a lot of her time working with the younger girls on our team,” Ciroli said. “She has passed down a tremendous wealth of knowledge to these ladies, and I hope they realize what an asset she has been to them.”

DRAKE WALKER, St. Clairsville – This Red Devil senior has been an impact runner for his entire career and took over the leadership role this season and came through brilliantly for Ciroli’s squad.

Walker was a state meet qualifier after finishing 10th in the regional and sixth in the district. He was an all-OVAC runner after finishing 11th overall.

“Drake had an outstanding senior year,” Ciroli said. “He has led the team to some very important wins that helped us to get to the regional meet.”

McKAYLA KINEMOND, Shadyside – This frosh made an instant impact for the Lady Tigers this season.

After a brilliant junior high career, Kinemond made a seamless transition to the 3.1 mile race. Kinemond qualified to the regional and narrowly missed a trip to the state meet this season.

She was 11th in the district meet and had a strong showing at the OVAC last month, placing 17th overall to earn all-OVAC accolades.

“McKayla’s transition from junior high to high school was a smooth one,” Rynkievich said. “I believe she’s proven through her performances to be a strong cross country runner. Her fierce work ethic, great attitude and strong leadership are her best assets. With experience and maturation, she’ll have a promising future.”

ALEX TIMKO, St. Clairsville – This junior was a solid runner for the Red Devils all season, helping them to the OVAC team title and a berth in the Division II regional.

Timko was the Buckeye 8 champion and qualified for the regional as an individual by virtue of his 16th place finish. He was also an all-OVAC performer this season.

“Alex had an awesome junior season,” Ciroli said. “I anticipate he’ll step it up his senior year and take lead of the team.”

LOGAN McCORT, St. Clairsville – This Red Devils’ freshman made an instant impact for the St. C. harriers this fall.

McCort was an all-OVAC finisher and was 17th in the district. He was the solid third runner for the Devils all season.

“Logan had a great season,” Ciroli said. “We’re looking forward to continued success from him in the coming years.”

HANNAH SURFACE, East Richland Christian – This senior had a brilliant final campaign and made history for the Lady Lions’ program, which is still in its youth as an OHSAA member.

Surface qualified for the regional, becoming the first athlete from her school to do so in cross country. She was also all-OVAC with a 24th place finish. She was 16th in the district to earn her trip to Pickerington where she was 31st in the regional.

TONY CIROLI, St. Clairsville – This veteran Red Devils’ mentor guided his boys and girls’ squads to brilliant campaigns once again.

St. Clairsville claimed the Buckeye 8 girls title and swept the OVAC Class 4A trophies. Along with the local success, St. C. finished second in the district and qualified for the regional as a team.