Cross fit athletes run cross country in the fall

Alyssa Mocci is a fit and fast midfielder in lacrosse who runs a 22-minute 5K in cross country. BY DAVE FREDERICK
October 26, 2012

Blood sport - I looked on my office bookshelves displaying has-been broken-arm trophies, oxidized plaques and lame certificates and notices, my latest prized award the One Gallon Donor Certificate of Appreciation from the Blood Bank of Delmarva. I'm  generally not negative but always O negative, which makes me a universal donor, but please don’t come after me looking for a live organ donation. Trust me, you can do better. Speaking of “blood in the game,” I find my position very simple: “Whatever keeps my kin on the field of play is the position I take, and if they are not out there on the pitch even for a second, some coach must be tripping out of their head." I call cross country a “blood sport” because the only people who come to watch are either coaching or related or the occasional rogue sportswriter like myself. On Oct. 24 off Abbott's Mill road west of Milford on the back way to Greenwood, I found Milford Millponds Nature Preserve, a beautiful place where even bus driver Chris Long walked the course before the competition. I focused on athletes from other sports who were giving cross country a try for the first time. Lacrosse player Alyssa Mocci, a fast midfielder, ran 22:22. “I love running; this has been so much fun,” Mocci said, stopping short of declaring a favorite sport. There were also lacrosse girls Riley Wagner and Karalyn Joseph, who helped Cape cross country to an 8-3 dual-meet season with all runners being underclassmen. Kellen Cannon is a senior at Sussex Tech, a first-team all-state attack in lacrosse, who threw over field hockey in favor of cross country and runs in the 23-minute range for 5K. "I hope it helps with my endurance this spring on the lacrosse field,” Cannon said.

What’s your take? - Maplewood dentist Dr. Bruce Wright, a Temple graduate, loves to talk sports. The only problem is, sometimes he asks me a question when I can’t move my jaw to respond. Bruce recently asked for my take on Lance Armstrong; up until that point I didn’t know I had one but I formulated an opinion right on the spot. "Lance is an arrogant jerk. I’m still trying to figure how he got next to 'Soak up the Sun' Sheryl Crow after dumping his wife." But seriously, Armstrong won the Tour De France seven times - it’s not like he didn’t - and all those skinny cycling clowns in their clown suits blood dope and use EPO, and it’s not even proven if it works. My biggest question on Armstrong has to do with his testicular cancer and was it caused by all those impurities ingested followed by two weeks sitting on a bicycle seat.

Homecoming - I am an advocate for kids in schools but have always thought Homecoming and Spirit Week were a slap in the face to those who don’t buy into it (call them unpopular; I call them smart) and what the heck are we teaching crowning kings and queens, lords and ladies, duchesses and dukes, not to mention personality-type award winners for spirit and congeniality? Some argue it’s a harmless tradition, and I answer, “So was Slave Day in the cafeteria until someone asked “Isn’t this just a bit politically incorrect, and how much did that girl just go for?”

Snippets - Just read of a Socks for Seniors charity and it reminded me of a musclebound man named Gypsy near Temple who sold new high black socks for a dollar at the Broad and Susquehanna entrance to the subway. Gypsy accepted tokens, even half a hoagie - you were smart to give him something. Runners, jump on your brooms for Sunday's Sea Witch 5K; don’t let some coastal storm dampen your enthusiasm. I will be in the press box Sunday watching the Eagles knock the Falcons from the ranks of the unbeaten. You can write that pick down in pen. Faceplant Boardriders and Liquid Board Shop will be presenting Skate the Cape Shred Festival Saturday, Nov. 10, at Cape Henlopen State Park. It is the first sanctioned longboard skateboard event in the First State. “Face plant like an eggplant!” Go on now, git!

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