Nov 10, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Just as it seems to do each November, the Fayetteville-Manlius cross country team offered a reminder why it is the strongest program in the state, and perhaps the nation, during Saturday’s New York State Public High School Athletic Association championship meet at Queensbury High School.
The boys Hornets relied on its top three runners to build an insurmountable lead over challengers Northport and Saratoga Springs, while in the girls race F-M relied on its incomparable depth and versatility to easily earn yet another state title.
Going first, the F-M boys team relied on the same formula that worked so well against Liverpool a week earlier in the Section III meet at Jamesville Beach Park – namely, send its top trio of junior Bryce Millar, senior Andrew Berge and sophomore Peter Ryan to the front, and see what kind of a margin they could establish.
Millar, as it turned out, found himself in a classic three-way battle with Northport’s Mike Brannigan and Rush-Henrietta’s Mickey Burke for the individual title. They hit the finishing chute together, but Millar, in a time of 15 minutes, 6.3 seconds, edged Brannigan (15:06.6) by 0.3 seconds and Burke (15:07.3) by exactly one second.
Berge would lead the next pack to the line and take fourth place in 15:16.3, third among team participants, while Ryan finished ninth overall in 15:25 flat and got fifth-place team points.
Now out in front, the Hornets needed two more solid performances to lock up the state championship – and got them from a pair of juniors. Adam Hunt finished 13th in the team standings (23th overall) in 15:49.1, while Kyle Barber, in a time of 15:54.7, was 15th on the team side and 28th overall, which clinched it.
When all was done, the Hornets had 37 points, while Northport and Saratoga both finished with 61 points, with Northport getting the tie-breaker to earn second place. As a bonus, four members of Liverpool’s team – Dan Muldoon, Ben Petrella, Connor Buck and Alex Christtensen – joined Utica Proctor’s Zakaria Adam as Section III also won the team title at the state meet.
F-M also saw junior Riley Hughes post a time of 16:35.9, good for 29th place in the team event, while freshman Patrick Perry was 40th in those same team standings in 16:51.7.
With their title secure secure, the boys stepped aside and watched the F-M girls easily make its way to another state championship, picking up 31 points as Saratoga, with 67 points, finished second. Suffern was third with 101 points.
Four Hornets finished within the top 15 of the individual standings and made up three of the top five in the team race, led by junior Annika Avery, who was second in the team race and sixth overall in 17 minutes, 54 seconds.
Avery was just ahead of sophomore Jenna Farrell, who was seventh overall and third in the team race in 17:56.7, while junior Jessica Howe, in 17:59.5, was ninth in the race and fifth in the team standings.
Senior Alana Pearl maintained the F-M domination, as she got to seventh in the team race and 13th overall in 18:07.3, while junior Olivia Ryan clinched the team honors as she ran to 32nd place in 18:46.1, which put her 14th in the team standings. Sophomore Megan Menz was 37th (17th team) in 18:48.3, with freshman Reilly Madsen (19:21.1) taking 60th place, but 30th among team runners.
Here, as in the boys race, Section III also won the team competition as its All-Star runners – Abby McNamara (Liverpool), Laura Leff (West Genesee), Morgan Mahoney (Liverpool), Jacqlynn Halsted (Cicero-North Syracuse) and Marissa Lathrop (Baldwinsville) – took the prize.
Meanwhile, East Syracuse-Minoa’s Jesse Perrone, the Section III Class B individual champion, took 25th in the state Class B race in a time of 16:11.1. Jamesville-DeWitt’s Isaac Tupper and Patrick Dye finished 50th and 51st, respectively, though they both posted the same time of 16:29.4.
In the Class B girls race, J-D’s Emilee Carpenter finished 58th in a time of 19:20.3. CBA’s Megan Ann Pierce was 47th in the Class C race in 20:01.2, part of a second-place sectional team performance.