Verona Marcellus cross country runners Ryan Manahan and Rachel Garn both carry high expectations into the 2012 season, and nothing that happened at Saturday's Vernon-Verona-Sherrill Invitational discouraged those thoughts.
Manahan, a senior, posted the fastest boys time in all four races, covering nearly 900 runners, on the 3.1-mile course that will host the Section III championships in early November.
Competing in Varsity Race 2, Manahan finished in 15 minutes, 53.2 seconds, winning his race by nearly 38 seconds over Baldwinsville's Alec Peinkofer (16:31.1), and posting the only sub-16 minute time of the entire event.
Meanwhile, in girls Varsity Race 2, Garn hit the finish line in 19 minutes, 39.6 seconds in cool, comfortable running conditions, topping the runner-up, Adirondack's Megan Tanner (20:21.0), by more than 41 seconds. It was the sixth-fastest overall time of the day.
Team-wise, the Marcellus girls finished third in its division with 128 points, while West Genesee, without Laura Leff in its lineup, finished second with 77 points. Baldwinwsville prevailed with 35 points.
For the Wildcats, Lindsey Weaver finished sixth in 20:57.2. Sara Ferranti, who was 18th (21:47.3), led a group of WG runners as Eva Young finished 20th (21:55.7), just ahead of Elise Dunshee (22:11.8), Alycia Andolina (22:16.8) and Annie Baker (22:17.7) in the 22nd through 24th spots.
Behind Garn for the Mustangs, Molly McGuane worked her way to 12th place, in 21:26.6. Eliza Bell finished 30th, in 22:44.9, while Schuyler Stuart (23:53.9) and Emily Townsend (24:07.6) followed.
Moving to the boys Varsity 2 race, West Genesee also was second here, getting 54 points to B'ville's 36, while Marcellus slid into fifth place with 141 points.
Kal Strickland, finishing eighth in 17:28.3, led a Wildcat pack where Nate Conroy took ninth place (17:29.5) and Mike Lannon was 10th in 17:38.7. Ethan Osborne worked his way to 12th place in 17:49.2 and Jack Erhard was 15th in 17:56.4.