2004 Spring/Summer Program News and Achievements

August 7, 2004 - Loudoun Special Forces representatives at Hershey National Championships
Based on their outstanding performances at the Virginia finals in Charlottesville, two members of Loudoun Special Forces were selected to represent the US South East Region at the Hershey National Championships held in Hershey, PA on August 7, 2004. Ben Walker placed sixth in the Boys 11-12 800m Final, while Hailey Smith placed third in the Girls 11-12 Softball Throw.

August 4, 2004 - Loudoun Special Forces qualifiers at AAU National Junior Olympics
Loudoun Special Forces runners Nick McLaughlin and Carolyn Smith were selected to represent Virginia at the National AAU Junior Olympics held in Des Moines, IA on August 04 based on their performances in the Intermediate 1500m at the Virginia AAU.  Running against the very best athletes in America, they represented themselves well with Nick setting a personal best.

July 18, 2004 State Games of Virginia - Roanoke
Loudoun Special Forces athletes made the trip to Roanoke, Virginia for the Virginia Commonwealth Games and dominated in the track events with multiple victories and medals achieved across sprints, middle distance and field events. Carl Silverlock led the way in the sprints and over the hurdles, ably supported by Bobby Vance, Andrew Hayden, Alexander Callahan, Rhonda Runion, Carolyn Smith, Ryan McPoland, Angelique Cross, Jeffrey Simmons and Antonio Cross. Coach Julie Hayden took third place in the Women's 5k. Through their performances, these athletes have qualified to run in the State Games of America to be held in Colorado Springs, Colorado in July 2005.

July 5, 2004 -  Featuring Bobby Vance
Loudoun Special Forces continued their middle distance presence as Bobby Vance, new to the team this year, and a Mercury Speed trainee achieved victories at the Randallstown, Hummingbird, and Glenarden Invitationals in the 800m and/or 1500 events, held in Maryland by the clubs whose invitational bears their names. This was no small feat as the competition represents some the nation's best track and field runners. Bobby placed fourth 4:32 at the AAU State Championships held in Hampton, Virginia on Father's Day weekend. Bobby, a standout at James Wood Middle School in Winchester, Virginia will attend Millbrook High School in Winchester Virginia this fall.

June 28 - July 4, 2004 - Qualifiers for USA Youth Outdoor Track & Field Championships
Based on their recent qualifying performances, Rhonda Runion (Intermediate Girls 800m) and Andrew Hayden (Bantam Boys 800m and 1500m) were accepted for a prestigious national event, the USA Youth Outdoor Track & Field Championships held in Baltimore MD on June 28 - July 4, 2004, where they competed with America's elite youth athletes.

June 28, 2004 - Loudoun Special Forces Track Shine in Charlottesville at Hershey State Championship
Loudoun Special Forces Track club achieved the most success in a decade for Loudoun County Parks and Recreation this past weekend at the Hershey State Championship held in Charlottesville at the University of Virginia Sports Complex.   Winning approximately a third of the events, the Force dominated the track and the field events.

Double district winner, Ryan McPoland, started things off with a bang winning the 1600 run in the first event of the day. Gold medal performances followed as double state champion winner, Ben Walker won the 800 and the 400 meters.   Walker led a sweep as fellow teammate and silver medalist Andre Best and Walker battled to the finish line and a Loudoun 400 meter sweep. The surge continued as Andrew Hayden, Samantha Schoonmaker took two silvers and a bronze in the 400 and 800 meters respectively. The Force gained momentum as 100 meter and 200 meter sprinters Jennifer Weatherly, Hailey Smith, Alexander Carter, Alexander Callahan and Bryan McCarthy blazed to a gold, silver, a bronze, a fifth place, and seventh place finishes where two of the races ended in photo finishes. Returning National champion, Smith also dominated in the softball throw.

Using great baton work, Special Forces saved the best for last as 9 -10 Girls and Boys relays of Erica Blair, Britt Savage, Karissa Love, Tori Panzica, Carter, Matt Panzica, Hayden, and Anthony Cassine sprinted to a fourth place and bronze medal finish that ended in a dead heat. The older kids continued the assault with exciting come from behind gold medal victories in the 11- 12 year old boys and 13 -14 year old girls relays to add the final touch. The teams consisted of Austin Callahan, Michael Clarkson, Best, Alexander Callahan, Stephanie Love, Connor Fleming, Vania Hunter, and Weatherly. The Hershey North American championship will be held the weekend of August 9 in Hershey, Pennsylvania.

June 21, 2004 - Loudoun Special Forces Track Stride into the Junior Olympics
Achieving personal bests to advance, the Special Forces Track club excelled again as they landed on the Hampton Beaches and the AAU Championships at Darling Stadium this past weekend.

Led by a strong middle distance performance The Force will have six representatives at this year's Junior Olympics to be held in Des Moines, Iowa, July 31st. Carolyn Smith led the charge by winning a gold in the Intermediate Girls 1500 meter run. She returned as the harrier quartet of Smith, Rhonda Runion, Connor Fleming and Hannah McLaughlin blazed to a silver medal finish in the 4x800 meter relay which automatically qualifies the ladies for the Junior Olympics. In an exciting photo finish Nick McLaughlin also qualified in the 1500 run with Bobby Vance placing fourth with times of 4:29 and 4:32.  Runion and Fleming ran outstanding races in the Girl's 800 meter run taking the bronze and fourth respectively recording times of 2:26 and 2:35.

Andrew Hayden paced the younger runners taking third in the 1500 meter run and fifth in the shot put and the 800 meter run achieving personal best in each event. Special Forces continue on a quest to gain national respect as sprinters Nick Fochtman, Sam Schoomaker, Karissa Love, Angelique Cross, Katherine Hayden, Anthony Cassine, Tori Panzica, Ben Walker, and Andrew Callahan placed in the finals for their respective events after two grueling days.

June 14, 2004 - Loudoun Special Forces Track Club Spring
Special Forces Track continue to surpass all expectations during a busy spring performing at the Glenarden Invitational, the Firebird Invitational relays held in Maryland and finally the Loudoun Hershey Regionals sponsored by Loudoun Parks and Recreation and Hershey.

Led once again by the middle distance and long distance crew of Bobby Vance, Nick McLaughlin, Carolyn Smith, Rhonda Runion, and Ben Walker, Special Forces blazed to gold medal finishes at each invitational sweeping the events respectively. Vance ran under 4:34 and a 4:35 as he continues to lower his times weekly. The sprints were also represented by Carl Silverlock and Kenice Brown as they placed in the high jump and hurdles respectively.   The Boys 15-16 year old 4 x100 relay of Silverlock, Antonio Cross, Emani Fenton, and Devon Brown upset the field to cap an impressive second day.

At Hershey, in the field and sprints, Hailey Smith, Megan Sullivan, Alexander Carter, Bryan McCarthy, Samantha Schoonmaker and Andre Best advanced in the softball throw, the 100 ,the 200 meters and the 400 meters convincingly. Double wins were turned in by Ryan McPoland and Ben Walker in the middle and long distance. Special Forces capped the victory by advancing or placing teams for every relay entered. The relays were led by Tori Panzica, Britt Savage, Erica Blair, Karissa Love, Carter, Anthony Cassine, Matt Panzica, Andrew Hayden, Stephanie Love, Sullivan, Vania Hunter, and Connor Fleming. The winners will advance to the state championships in Charlottesville Saturday , June 26th at the University of Virginia. Runners will also attend the AAU championships in Hampton, Va. this weekend.

May 24, 2004 - Loudoun Special Forces Track Club Start 2004 Season with a Bang
Special Forces Track surpassed all expectations to begin a busy season performing at the Randallstown Invitational, the Hummingbird Invitational relays held at Northwestern High School located in Prince Georges County and finally the Loudoun Hershey Sectionals sponsored by Loudoun Parks and Recreation.

Finishing no lower than fifth in any event, approximately forty of Loudoun's best athletes blazed to outstanding performances. Special Forces began by winning the 100 through 400 sprints led by Tori Panzica, Andrew Hayden, Alexander Callahan, Ben Walker and Kenice Brown.

Special Forces continued on their quest for excellence at the Hummingbird relays in the middle and long distance events as the senior harriers, Bobby Vance, Christian School State Champion and mile record holder Nick McLaughlin, Rhonda Runion, and Carolyn Smith dominated and dashed to 1500 meter and 800 victories.   Brown continued her dominance in the 100 and 200 meters blazing to a personal best second place finishes. 

The Force momentum continued into the younger divisions at the Hershey sectionals despite a postponement for most of the events due to thunderstorm threats. The 400 meter sprinters swept the events as Hayden, Panzica, Walker, Samantha Schoonmaker and Andre Best performed impressively. Sprinters Joi Green, Jeffrey Simmons, David McCarthy, Emma McLaughlin, and Stephanie Love blazed to personal best in the 100 meter trials. In the field, Hershey National Champion, Hailey Smith, currently leads all competitors in the softball throw competition. The winners will advance to the regional championships at Potomac Fall High school once the sectionals have been completed Tuesday, May 25th at Heritage High school.

For 2005 Spring/Summer News click here

Special Forces Track Club 1998-2005