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On Nov. 10 as the door sat unmoved, the Calvert girls cross country team sat directly in front of it waiting patiently at the state cross country championships.

When the results emerged, Calvert had made Southern Maryland Athletic Conference history.

The Calvert Cavaliers, under head coach John Major, won the school’s and the SMAC’s first-ever cross country state title with 57 points at the Class 2A event at Hereford High School in Parkton.

“This is awesome,” said Major, a nine-year cross country coach with the school, eight as head coach, afterwards. “Calvert High has never had a state champion in cross country before. It’s fantastic. This season has already done a lot. The recognition gets more kids wanting to come out and be a part of the team and that success. It breeds involvement and participation.”

Calvert finished with three runners inside of the top-11 spots.

Leading Calvert was Courtney Mattson, who placed fourth overall in 20 minutes 1.8 seconds, while teammates Hannah Aris (20:15.8) and Elizabeth Hite (20:30.7) finished seventh and 11th overall, respectively.

“Our season has been amazing,” Mattson said afterwards. “This is what we have been dreaming about all season. All season, our coach has been pushing us harder and harder because he knows that, even if we didn’t, we’re capable of winning this meet. This is just the icing on the cake for our team.”

The Cavaliers finish off a dream season that included an undefeated regular season SMAC title, a SMAC championship meet title and a 2A South Region title.

Brianna Hite, Carli Stewart, Kim Gerber and Liane Porter also ran for Calvert and helped etch the new pages of athletic history for the school.

Aris added after the state title win, “I am still trying to absorb it all because I would have never guessed I would have finished in seventh. The thing that I am most happy about is that all of my team, all of our runners, did so well today.”

Mattson, a junior, was an All-SMAC first-team selection in the fall and the All-County girls Athlete of the Year. Major was named the All-SMAC and All-County girls Coach of the Year, while Hite, Gerber, Aris and Stewart were also All-SMAC and All-County selections. Out of that bunch, only Hite is a graduating senior.

AJ MASON