Those state rankings proved to be an accurate predictor at the New York State Public High School Athletic Association Class C girls cross country Championships last weekend at Warwick Valley, under clear blue skies as the temperature reached an unkind 64 degrees by race-time.
The Skaneateles Lakers, more accustomed to 40 degree air for the past month, worked hard and finished behind state champion Greenwich (29), and Bronxville (46). Skaneateles tallied an unexpectedly high 124 points.
We were definitely off, said coach Jack Reed. We did almost everything right, but just didn't have it at the right time.
"We were peaked perfectly but some late nights studying combined with the unusual heat took its toll on the girls. Unfortunately it wasn't indicative of how good these girls have been all year.
Finishing off the pace in 34th place overall in her last race was senior Hannah Waite, in a time of 20:16.8. Christina Homeyer enjoyed the warmer air, as the junior placed 46th in 20:41.8.
Senior Rachel Vaivoda took 53rd in 20:54.9, while Stephanie Searing was seven seconds back, in 55th (21:01.6). Rachel Hosie made a late move to finish 60th in 21:09.4. Kristin Roberts placed 69th (21:24.0) and Alexis Mazzeo took 79th, in 21:44.6.
To tell you the truth, if we'd raced out of our mind we'd have been third," said assistant coach Rob Tuttle. " And if we blew up, we'd have been third.
"Unfortunately we did it the latter way and we'll spend a lot of time tinkering with our system in order to avoid a letdown in the future. But, the girls had a great season.
The Lakers won five of six invitational meets during the season while winning the league title and extending their unbeaten streak to 87 meets. After a two-year absence from the state meet, Skaneateles was happy to return to the big stage.