Skaneateles girls cross country runner Madeline Adams stands proudly on the starting line right before the start of last saturday's state Class C cross country championship race at Vernon-Verona-Sherrill. It was the second consecutive state meet appearance for the sophomore, who battled through muddy conditions to take 46th place in a time of 22:39.1.
It was a dream season for Madeline Adams, the Skaneateles girls cross country sophomore runner who represented the team and school in last Saturday’s New York State Public High School Athletic Association championship meet at Vernon-Verona-Sherrill, in the shadow of the Turning Stone Casino.
Adams won races in three sections this fall - her hometown Section III, plus Section IV in the Southern Tier and Section 5 which covers the Greater Rochester region.
In doing so, Adams set a school home course record at the Polo Grounds, set a course record in Homer, finished in first place four times and placed higher than sixth only one time.
But at the Class C state meet last Saturday, the plans didn’t work out as Adams placed 46th in a time of 22 minutes, 39.1 seconds on the muddy mess.
“I woke up at three (a.m.), woke up again at five and again at seven, so I knew I was ready,” said Adams. “I was in eighth after running on the good ground, but I did nothing but slip in the mud. And in the big pack I was with, I couldn’t even see the ground before my feet landed.”
And the mud lasted almost two miles, said Skaneateles head coach Jack Reed.
“Her stride, which we’ve worked on, is just a bit too long for massive amounts of endless mud,” said Reed. “She can’t counter the feet constantly slipping with her long stride. It was the little, light, quick-footed runners and the brutes who made it through the slop.
“She’s upset, and rightly so,” added Reed. “With the abnormal conditions just being somewhat moderate in their chaotic way, she’d have been an All-State finisher in the top 25 or so. She’s tough. She’ll get past this and come back stronger and faster next year.”