West Virginia 2013 Cross Country Preview: Paladino Twins

This is the 2nd in a series of previews on West Virginia High School boys’ and girls’ cross country for the 2013 cross country season.

This preview will be about the Paladino twins – Andy and Millie.

Amelia and Andy Paladino - Dalton Photography Photo

Amelia Paladino - WVRunners Photo

 

Athlete: Amelia “Millie” Paladino

Year: Senior

School: University High School (Class of 2014)

Location: Morgantown, WV

Class: AAA Girls

Pre-Season Rank: West Virginia #1

Coach: Ed Frohnapfel

 

Personal Bests:

800 Meter Run - 2:18.08

1,600 Meter Run - 4:57.92

One Mile Run - 4:56.57

3,200 Meter Run - 10:40.27

Two Mile Run - 10:46.36

5,000 Meter Run - 17:32.00

 

Athletic Honors:

2013 WV Track & Field All-State First Team in 1600M – 1st Place (4:59) & 3200M – 1st Place (10:40 - State Meet Record)

2012 WV Cross Country All-State First Team – 1st Place (17:47)

2012 WV Track & Field All-State First Team in 800M – 4th Place (2:20) & 1600M – 1st Place (5:01)

2011 WV Cross Country All-State First Team – 3rd Place (19:15)

2011 WV Track & Field All-State First Team in 3200M – 2nd Place (11:14)

2010 WV Cross Country All-State First Team - 4th Place (19:13)

 

Amelia Paladino, a senior distance standout at University High School, is the pre-season WV#1 ranked runner for AAA girls. She had an outstanding junior year in cross country and track.

Cross Country: In October, Amelia ran a 17:47.32 in the 5,000 Meter Run at the West Virginia State XC Championships, placing first. In November, she ran a PR of 17:32.00 in the 5,000 Meter Run at the Foot Locker South Regional, placing 10th. In December, she ran an 18:25.20 in the 5,000 Meter Run at the Foot Locker Nationals, placing 30th. Maggie Drazba, a senior at St. Marys High School in St. Marys, WV and Amelia Paladino were West Virginia's first females to ever qualify for Foot Locker Nationals.

Indoor Track: In February, Amelia ran a PR of 4:57.92 in the 1,600 Meter Run at the SPIRE HS Showcase, placing third.

Outdoor Track: In April, Amelia ran a PR of 4:56.57 in the One Mile Run at The Penn Relays Carnival, placing 4th. In May, she ran a new season best time of 4:59.43 in the 1,600 Meter Run (placing first) and ran a PR of 10:40.27 in the 3,200 Meter Run (placing first) at the West Virginia State Track & Field Championships.

Outdoor Nationals: In June, Amelia ran a 5:01.78 in the One Mile Run at New Balance Outdoor Nationals, placing 16th.

 

About:

Amelia Paladino started her athletic career participating in gymnastics, T-ball, horseback riding, soccer, and basketball. She started running cross country and track when she was in the sixth grade at St. Francis Central Middle School in Morgantown, WV, because she realized that she was to just too small to play basketball. She decided to give running a try, because her mom and her older sister Julia ran. Amelia was winning races in middle school and even placed fourth at States her freshman year, but it wasn’t until her sophomore year that she realized how much success she was having. Amelia has a twin brother who also runs and is a top ranked runner in the AAA boys. Is there a sibling rivalry? There is a little bit says Amelia, but it’s a little more him than me, boys are just so competitive. I must admit when he runs great, then I’m like Uh oh. If you are wondering if they train together, “No!” says Amelia. “My brother is much faster than me.” When asked what her favorite workout was, she replied “Tempo runs of 4 to 5 miles. I used to hate them, but I realized they helped me most.” The one race that Paladino is most proud of is when she qualified for nationals as a junior at the 2012 Foot Locker South Regional at McAlpine Greenway Park in Charlotte, NC. Amelia credits her success to her mom, her high school coach Ed Frohnapfel, and her off season Flyers coach Jonathan Wright. As far as setting goals, making it to the Foot Locker cross country nationals has made her more determined than ever to want to go back, but she wants her University girls cross country team to do well at States too. “I want us to win another championship” says Paladino. Amelia is just content with running in the low 17’s, because she realizes that no two cross country course are alike and the weather can play a factor in how she performs. She would like to be nationally ranked and to be the only West Virginia female to ever qualify for Foot Locker Nationals at Balboa Park in San Diego, CA twice. Paladino has been heavily recruited by some top notch colleges because of the times that she has posted, but she is still undecided.

 

Paladino’s 2013 Cross Country Schedule:

Aug 24 - Knight Night XC Relays at Preston, WV

Aug 28 - UHS Invitational (Home Meet)

Aug 31 - California University of PA/Marty Uher Invitational at California, PA

Sept 7 – Chic-Fil-A Invitational at Mineral Wells, WV

Sept 13 - Harry Groves Spiked Shoe Invitational at State College, PA  

Sept 25 – TRAC Championship

Sept 28 - Carlisle Invitational at Carlisle, PA

Oct 5 - OVAC Championship at Meadowbrook, OH

Oct 12 - Cameron Wild and Wet Invitational at Cameron, WV

Oct 26 – WVSSAC Region I - Class AAA at Wheeling Park, WV

Nov 2 – West Virginia State Cross Country Championships at Ona, WV

Nov 30 – Foot Locker South Regional Championship at Charlotte, NC

 

A Final Thought:

Amelia Paladino is one of the greatest female distance runners in our state of all-time and this Foot Locker National finalist will be back for her senior season to establish her own legacy and claim to the best ever. She should easily win her second AAA girls cross country title on November 2nd at Cabell Midland High School / Ona, WV. Amelia Paladino has been fortunate to enjoy the kind of success that many girls can only dream about. She has a competitive fire and is determined to reach her goals. After watching her at last year’s Foot Locker South Regional, I was reminded of a quote from legendary Coach Joe Newton of York High School who said, “Who are those people who win? Those who when their lungs are bursting keep going. They are like leaves in the fall. One always hangs on to the very end.” She held on for that final qualifying spot for Nationals. Amelia has tasted success, she is working hard, and I am looking forward to seeing her make a return trip to San Diego, CA.

Can this West Virginia runner become the only West Virginia high school female to ever qualify for Foot Locker Nationals twice and to be a contender for a national cross country title this fall?

 

Andy Paladino - WVRunners photo

Athlete: Andy Paladino

Year: Senior

School: University High School (Class of 2014)

Location: Morgantown, WV

Class: AAA Boys

Pre-Season Rank: West Virginia #4

Coach: Ed Frohnapfel

 

Personal Bests:

800 Meter Run - 2:04.59

1,600 Meter Run - 4:26.01

3,200 Meter Run - 9:32.93

5,000 Meter Run - 16:14.24

 

Athletic Honors:

2013 WV Track & Field All-State First Team in 1600M – 5th Place (4:26) & 3200M – 6th Place (9:39)

2012 WV Cross Country All-State First Team – 8th Place (16:14)

 

Andy Paladino, a senior at University High School, is the pre-season WV#4 ranked runner for AAA boys. His junior year he showed maturity as a runner in cross country and track.

Cross Country: In October, Andy ran a PR of 16:14.24 in the 5,000 Meter Run at the West Virginia State XC Championships, placing 8th. In November, Andy ran a 16:22.00 in the 5,000 Meter Run at the Foot Locker South Regional, placing 142nd.

Indoor Track: In February, Andy ran a new season best time of 9:45.83 in the 3,200 Meter Run at the Akron Rubber City Meet OPEN HS, placing second.

Outdoor Track: In April, Andy ran a PR of 9:32.93 in the 3,200 Meter Run at the Charleston Gazette/Friends of Coal Relays (placing 4th) and he ran a PR of 2:04.59 in the 800 Meter Run at the Ohio Valley Athletic Conference 3A, 5A Qualifying Meet (placing 5th). In May, Andy ran a PR of 4:26.01 in the 1,600 Meter Run (placing 5th) and he ran a 9:39.10 in the 3,200 Meter Run (placing 6th) at the West Virginia State Track & Field Championships.

 

About:

Andy Paladino started running cross country in the sixth grade at St.  Francis Central Middle School in Morgantown, WV. He ran because his older sister Julia ran. He didn’t like running until the seventh grade. Andy’s proudest moment running was this past track season when he set the prelim record in the 1600 meter run at the Cal Pokas OVAC (Ohio Valley Athletic Conference) Championships in a time of 4:26. His goals for this cross country season is to make first team all-state, place in the top three and to run 15:40 for 5,000 meters. When asked if his team had a shot at winning States Paladino said, “Yes, we feel confident, but we have to keep our heads on straight.” I asked him what was more important winning an individual title or a team championship, without hesitation he replied, “Team, because we are all so close.” After the regular cross country season is over, Paladino will head south in November to run in the seeded boys race at the Foot Locker South Regional Championship at McAlpine Greenway Park in Charlotte, NC. Next fall, he would like to run for a Division I College, but he is still undecided on which one.

 

Paladino’s 2013 Cross Country Schedule:

Aug 24 - Knight Night XC Relays at Preston, WV

Aug 28 - UHS Invitational (Home Meet)

Aug 31 - California University of PA/Marty Uher Invitational at California, PA

Sept 7 – Chic-Fil-A Invitational at Mineral Wells, WV

Sept 13 - Harry Groves Spiked Shoe Invitational at State College, PA 

Sept 25 – TRAC Championship

Sept 28 - Carlisle Invitational at Carlisle, PA

Oct 5 - OVAC Championship at Meadowbrook, OH

Oct 12 - Cameron Wild and Wet Invitational at Cameron, WV

Oct 26 – WVSSAC Region I - Class AAA at Wheeling Park, WV

Nov 2 – West Virginia State Cross Country Championships at Ona, WV

Nov 30 – Foot Locker South Regional Championship at Charlotte, NC

 

A Final Thought:

Andy Paladino will provide key leadership for the University boys cross country team. With Paladino, he doesn’t seek individual recognition, but wants to see his team succeed at States. University came up short last cross country season by placing second to powerhouse Cabell Midland High School, which has either been State Champions or Runner-ups eleven out of the last fourteen years under legendary coach Chris Parsons.

Having qualified for the past three West Virginia High School AAA Boys Cross Country Championships, ending his senior season with a championship would mean everything to Paladino.

It would mean a lot to Andy and his University cross country team because they haven’t won since 2006.

Can Paladino help lead his team to a cross country championship by defeating the second winningest program in West Virginia boys cross country history? Or will having three years’ State Meet experience help him win an individual state cross country title?

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