As it turned out, Liverpool’s boys cross country season did not end when it claimed the New York State Federation championship at Bowdoin Park on Nov. 16.
Exactly two weeks later, the Warriors were back in Wappingers Falls, competing in the Nike Cross Regional Championships. And while it could only manage a third-place finish behind Fayetteville-Manlius and Northport, the story was far from over.
That was because, one day later, it was announced that Liverpool had earned an at-large invitation to fly to Portland, Ore., for this Saturday’s Nike Cross Nationals, as close to a national championship event as cross country can provide.
F-M and Northport will be there, too, but the fact that the Warriors earned this invitation spoke to the quality of work it had done all season, including the regional meet.
In its second go-round at Bowdoin Park, Liverpool picked up 94 points, third in the 19-team field. F-M, led again by Bryce Millar (fourth) and Andrew Berge (fifth), won the race with 48 points, while Northport, with 76 points, slid into second place, led by Mike Brannigan, who won the individual races in 15 minutes, 29.9 seconds.
Dan Muldoon led the Warriors, finishing 11th among team runners and 15th overall in 16:03.5, just ahead of Ben Petrella, who was 13th in the team race (17th overall) in 16:08 flat.
Connor Buck made his way to 20th place overall, and 15th in the team competition, with his time of 16:13.1, as Dylan McCarthy got to 31st place (24th team) in 16:34.6. Alex Christensen, in a time of 16:48.2, took 31st place (46th overall), while Nick LeClair got a time of 17:02.3 and Ryan Comstock, in 17:53.4, rounded out the field.
Now Liverpool will follow F-M and Northport out to Portland for one more big race. The Nike Cross Nationals will begin at 2:35, which is 11:35 a.m. in the Pacific Time Zone. The girls race, where F-M is going for an eighth consecutive national title, starts at 1:05 (10:05 a.m. PST).