The Lancaster-Lebanon League cross country season gets underway Tuesday with the opening league meets for all 23 teams. Below is a team-by-team look at the L-L squads in Sections One and Two. The teams are listed alphabetically.

Section One:

Cedar Crest:

Coach: Brandon Risser (15th Season)

Last year’s record: 8-2, placed first at District 3-3A meet

Key returners: Ryan Scicchitano (senior, placed 59th at 2018 District 3-3A meet, placed 100th at 2018 PIAA 3A meet), William Sheffield (senior, placed 27th at 2018 District 3-3A meet, placed 81st at 2018 PIAA 3A meet), Dominique Smith-Rodriguez (senior), Tommy Bildheiser (junior, placed ninth at 2018 District 3-3A meet, placed 103rd at 2018 PIAA 3A meet), Daniel Stebbins (senior), Miles Weber (junior), Luke Hinegardner (sophomore, placed 10th at 2018 District 3-3A meet, placed 39th at 2018 PIAA 3A meet), Ben McElroy (sophomore, placed 46th at 2018 District 3-3A meet, placed 92nd at 2018 PIAA 3A meet), Ryan Wolfe (sophomore)

Coach’s thoughts: “We have a solid group returning from last year’s squad. The boys have worked hard this summer to build a good foundation of fitness and strength for this season. The team is looking forward to the challenge of racing against some great competition in the L-L League and beyond!”

Conestoga Valley

Coach: Mark Amway (seventh season)

Last year’s record: 1-9

Key returners: Emmanuel Gitonga (sophomore, placed 110th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Dante Velasco (sophomore, placed 205th in 2018 District 3-3A meet)

Key newcomers: Jesse Kanagy (junior), Micah Aldrich (freshman), Tyler Slingluff (freshman)

Coach’s thoughts: “Team is very young, but should improve on last year’s record with the greater depth of this team.”

Elizabethtown:

Coach: Mark Gallagher (seventh season)

Last year’s record: 4-6

Key returners: Jesse Myers (senior, placed 71st in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Nathan Johnson (sophomore, placed 120th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Alex Hartman (senior, placed 75th in District 3-3A meet), Garrick English (junior, placed 73rd in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Wyatt Mummau (sophomore), Jared Alvarez (senior, placed 223rd in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Dustin Sauder (senior, placed 247th in 2018 District 3-3A meet)

Key newcomers: Owen Gensemer (sophomore), Aidan Schiavoni (sophomore), Shane Moran (freshman)

Coach’s thoughts: “The boys team lost a few races by a point or two last year.  With most of our varsity back and strong senior leadership provided by Jesse Myers and Alex Hartman, the boys look for a winning record and a trip to the district championships this year.”

Ephrata:

Coach: Mike Hershberger (ninth season)

Last year’s record: 3-7

Key returners: Ray Truex (senior, placed 146th in 2018 District 3-3A meet). Nathan Kimmel (junior, placed 164th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Jackson Hart (senior, placed 102nd in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Micah Weaver (senior, placed 167th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Aaron Hershberger (sophomore, placed 258th in 2018 District 3-3A meet)

Key newcomers: Colby Simes

Coaches thoughts: “The Ephrata boys team has a couple runners that have improved over the last year. If they can come together and run as a group, they will be competitive this year. They will look to improve on their sixth place finish out of the 22 Lancaster-Lebanon League teams last year.”

Hempfield:

Coach: Curt Rogers (second season)

Last year’s record: 11-2

Key returners: Jack Mieszkalski (senior), Grayson Dague (senior), Evan Eshleman (junior, placed 38th at last year’s District 3-3A meet), Justin Thomas (senior), David Jackson (junior, placed 44th at last year’s District 3-3A meet), Dale Winand (sophomore, placed 89th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Ethan Kline (senior, placed 91st in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Owen Jackson (junior)

Key newcomers: Isaiah Hollinger (freshman), Joe Farhney (freshman)

Coach’s thoughts: “The Hempfield boys should be a competitive force in the league this season.”

Lebanon:

Coach: Thomas Pearson (fifth season)

Key returners: Riley Klick (senior, placed 68th at 2018 District 3-3A meet), Caleb Hershey (sophomore, placed 124th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Owen Sheetz (junior, placed 240th in 2018 District 3-3A meet) Isaac Showers, (junior, placed 190th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Owen Showers (junior, placed 199th in 2018 District 3-3A meet)

Coach’s thoughts: “Five of our top six from last year are returning. Right now we do not have a clear No. 1 runner, but have a very solid pack with our Nos. 1-5 runners. They have made some nice improvements during track season last spring and have had a solid summer of training.  Would like to see this group improve upon their team places at the L-L League and District Three meet.”

Manheim Township:

Coach: Kevin Stover (second season)

Last year’s record: 8-2

Key returners: Drew Sassaman (junior, placed 48th at 2018 District 3-3A meet), Riley Horton (senior, placed 104th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Dieter Geib (senior, placed 145th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Keven Perez (senior, placed 122nd in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Tyler Stevens (sophomore, placed 119th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Andrew Gusavage (junior), Alex Boomsma (senior)

Key newcomers: Liam Rockwell (freshman)

Coach’s thoughts: “Riley Horton, Tyler Stevens, Dieter Geib and Keven Perez return from last year’s top seven. Alex Boomsma, Andrew Gusavage and Liam Rockwell are showing strong potential as this year’s team looks to develop success throughout the season.”

McCaskey:

Coach: Mike Craighead (fifth consecutive season at McCaskey, previously Conestoga Valley coach for 14 seasons)

Last year’s record: 7-3

Key returners: Alex Miller (junior, placed 28th at 2018 L-L League meet, placed 58th at 2018 District 3-3A meet), Gavin Collier (senior, placed 85th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Stephen Schousen (junior, placed 34th at 2018 L-L League meet, placed 60th at 2018 District 3-3A meet), Jeremy Dovin (sophomore, placed 159th in 2018 District 3-3A meet)

Key newcomers: Lachlane McLahne (sophomore), Ben Blough (freshman)

Coach’s thoughts: “The kids have done an excellent job with their summer training. Our team finished fourth at the L-L Meet last fall, and would like to improve upon that finish.”

Penn Manor:

Coach: Bob Ulmer (22nd season)

Last year’s record: 5-5

Key returners: junior Graham Thomas (placed eighth at last year’s District 3-3A meet, placed 53rd at 2018 PIAA 3A meet), junior Lou Lindsley (placed 37th at last year’s District 3-3A meet), Maxwell Kreiter (junior, placed 140th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Jesse Kenagy (junior, placed 191st in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Jordan Photis (junior, placed 213th in 2018 District 3-3A meet)

Key newcomers: Jeremiah Hetrick, Isaac Bragelman

Coach’s thoughts: “We expect to have a stronger team with many of last year’s runners returning and the addition of a few key newcomers.”

Solanco:

Coach: Craig Ausel (seventh season)

Key returners: Tate Fisher (senior), Avery Jacobsen (sophomore, placed 179th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Colin Althoff (senior, placed 257th in 2018 District 3-3A meet)   

Author's note: There was miscommunication on my part on obtaining 2019 Solanco information. I will update this section as soon as possible. My apologies.

Warwick:

Coach: Matt Bomberger (second season)

Last year’s record: 9-1, L-L Section One champion, placed first at L-L League championship meet, placed second at District 3-3A meet

Key returners: Jeremy Bell (senior, placed 42nd at last year’s District 3-3A meet, placed 75th at PIAA 3A meet), Parker Keares (senior, placed 47th at last year’s District 3-3A meet, placed 70th at PIAA 3A meet), Jeremiah Hendrix (senior, placed 150th in 2018 District 3-3A meet, placed 128th at PIAA 3A meet), David Bach (senior, placed 87th in 2018 District 3-3A meet, placed 116th at PIAA 3A meet),  Logan Mull (sophomore), Josef Bach (sophomore), Colby Richard (sophomore), Marcus Wachira (senior, placed 153rd in 2018 District 3-3A meet, placed 105th at PIAA 3A meet)

Key newcomers: J.H. Mertz

Coach’s thoughts: The Warwick boys will use last year’s momentum and success to motivate this year's squad to be their best, work hard, and achieve big goals. The team brings crucial experience from 2018 as they return seven of their top 10. The guys are making quick strides in the early weeks of the season and are looking strong and hungry to compete as a tight pack.”

Section Two:

Annville-Cleona:

Coach: Caitlin Heller (first season)

Last year’s record: 3-8

Key returners: Gavin Knox (senior, placed 157th in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Sean Springer (senior, placed 172nd in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Jack Tshudy (junior), Neil Waldhausen (senior, placed 89th in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Sean Springer (senior), Matt Inman (senior, placed 160th in 2018 District 3-2A meet)

Key newcomers: Jamar Gonzalez-Allie (freshman), Michael Moran (junior), Chase Watson (sophomore), Drew Dorsey (freshman), Noah Safford (junior)

Coach’s thoughts: “With 26 runners on the roster, we have lots of depth for what could be our top 10. Our top three are really strong. Our numbers four through 10 runners is anyone’s game. That will help greatly to improve the team because as we move forward.”

Cocalico:

Coach: Ron Derr (30th season)

Last year’s record: 7-4

Key returners: Jake Walsh (junior, placed 210th in 2018 District 3-3A meet)

Key newcomers: Austin Krantz, Tyler Wenrich, Ian Becker

Coach’s thoughts: “After a year with lighter numbers on the varsity team we have had a better turnout, which is exciting. However, only three of 13 currently on the roster have varsity cross country experience, so this is possibly the least-experienced team I have coached during my years at Cocalico. This year’s team will definitely have many growing pains to endure and we will need to look at early-season meets to gain experience. So far, the group has been very positive through training but we are a team taking baby steps on a hopefully long journey. This year’s team goals will be structured primarily around individual improvement.”

Columbia

Coach: Charles Leader (11th season)

Last year’s record: 0-10

Key returners: Anthony Palmisano (junior)

Key newcomers: Tanner Ness (junior)

Coach’s thoughts: "Since we are low in numbers at the varsity level we will be working to have the boys qualify for postseason competition.”

Donegal

Coach: Matthew Werner (third season)

Last year’s record: 7-4

Key returners: Logan Fry (junior, placed 36th in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Hunter Gehman (sophomore, placed 126th in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Sam Rothstein (sophomore, placed 120th in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Ethan Steck (junior, placed 95th in 2018 District 3-2A meet)

Key newcomers: Brock Overlander (junior)

Coach’s thoughts: “Our boys team will look to build off of their momentum from last season with another winning record this year. Returners Logan Fry and Hunter Gehman, along with football convert Brock Overlander should lead the way for the boys team. Sam Rothstein and Ethan Steck will provide much needed depth for the boys squad. Now two years removed from an invaluable senior class, this young team will look to put their own stamp in the school’s record books.”

Elco

Coach: Chuck Gerberich (11th season)

Key returners: Mitchell Gray (senior, placed 25th in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Matthew Sweinhart (senior, placed 63rd in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Hunter Bailey (senior, placed 162 in 2018 District 3-2A meet)

Key newcomers: Jason Whelan, Nathan Sanchez

Coach’s thoughts: At this point we are hoping to have five runners to comprise a team, as we graduated eight senior boys last year, and two others have moved to other sports. Mitchell Gray should continue to lead the boys and is looking to qualify for the PIAA meet this year after just missing by a few spots last year. Duplicating the results of the past two years is going to be difficult.”

Garden Spot

Coach: Traci Tempone (third season)

Key returners: Dakota Cox (junior), Daniel Hurst (senior), Adam Horning (senior, placed 143rd in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Samuel Schultz (junior), Finn Wenrich (sophomore), Finn Wenrich (sophomore)

Key newcomers: Zane Kauffman (freshman), Alan Krock (freshman), A.J. Vega (freshman), Luis Martínez-Pérez (junior)

Coach’s thoughts: “This team has added in some talented newcomers and I’m excited to watch them all grow as a group.  They’re close-knit and working hard together to improve upon last year.”

Lampeter-Strasburg

Coach: Mari Cunningham (fifth season)

Last year’s record: 10-1, L-L Section Two co-champion

Key returners: Luka Vranich (freshman, placed 207th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Daniel McMichael (senior, placed 187th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Nathan Eberly (junior, placed 251st in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Colten Morris (senior, placed 255th in 2018 District 3-3A meet)

Key newcomers: Cunningham said L-S has a, “large group of freshmen and sophomores who are new to the team and working hard to earn a spot in the top group.”

Coach’s thoughts: “Pack running will be key for this year's team and is an evident strength already.”

Lancaster Catholic

Coach: Tom Simpson (10th consecutive season - previously coached Lancaster Catholic from 1978-1984)

Last year’s record: 7-4

Key returners: Chris Martin (senior, placed 100th in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Daniel Myers (junior, placed 107th in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Gabe Knafelc (junior, placed 80th in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Mason Moore (sophomore, placed 77th in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Miles Durrett (junior), Peyton Sheaffer (senior)

Key newcomers: Cooper Linkey (sophomore)

Coach’s thoughts: “We have a fairly deep team with no stars but with good balance through seven or eight runners so we will depend on pack running for our wins. Our turnout of 23 boys is excellent for a school our size and we hope to pick up at least two more wins than last year.”

Lancaster Mennonite

Coach: Lee Thurber (first season)

Key returners: Tim Adams, Shane Harmer, Aidan Grambau

Key newcomers: Caleb Metzler, Ethan Kanagy, Henry Martin

Coach’s thoughts: “We are a relatively young team after graduating a number of runners the past two years. Excited to see them each develop and improve over the season.”

Manheim Central

Coach: Ryan Kennedy (fourth season)

Last year’s record: 10-1, L-L Section Two co-champion

Key returners: Isaac Martin (senior, placed 194th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Michael Greenwald (sophomore, placed 188th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Elijah Wagner (senior, placed 134th in 2018 District 3-3A meet), Brady Knier (senior, placed 266th in 2018 District 3-3A meet)

Key newcomers: Carson Brooks (freshman)

Coach’s thoughts: “The boys have a lot of depth this season, and we are working on closing some gaps to strengthen our top seven. The guys had a nice block of summer training, so we’re focusing on continuing to build on that foundation of fitness. Isaac Martin and Elijah Wagner are strong senior leaders and have done a great job of strengthening our team culture.”

Northern Lebanon

Coach: Tricia Schafebook (fourth season)

Key returners: Levi Arms (junior), Gage Krall (junior, placed third in 2018 District 3-2A meet, placed 17th at 2018 PIAA 2A meet), Brandon Bomberger (senior), Damian Fiore (sophomore, placed 156th in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Ayden Krall (sophomore, placed 134th in 2018 District 3-2A meet)

Key newcomers: Matthew Getz (sophomore), Tyler Meyer (sophomore), Mathew Tinto (junior)

Coach’s thoughts: “This is a close-knit team that is looking to achieve postseason success together.”

Octorara

Coach: Christian Taylor (11th season)

Last year’s record: 1-10

Key returners: Jaden DiAntonio (sophomore) and Xander Donnelly (sophomore), Parry Bentley (junior, placed 153rd in 2018 District 3-2A meet), Sam Bishop (sophomore), Xander Donnelly (sophomore)

Key newcomers: Lucas Thaler (first place at 2018 L-L junior high meet)

Coach’s thoughts: “We will have a very young team with eight ninth-graders and three tenth-graders making up the majority of our team. While our eye is on the future with this young team, we are very excited to see what Lucas Thaler can achieve at the senior high level after winning the L-L junior high championship last year.”