Oct 24, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
What Kaitlyn Neal went through, on an individual basis, would mirror what the Skaneateles girls cross country team faced on a combined basis during Wednesday’s Onondaga High School League Liberty division championship meet at Jordan-Elbridge.
Neal found herself in a classic duel with Marcellus’ Rachel Garn, just as the state Class C no. 2-ranked Lakers, champions of the Liberty National division in the regular season, found itself in a tense contest with Westhill/Bishop Ludden, the regular-season champs of the Liberty American division.
And in the end, both would settle for second place.
Neal, individually, stayed step-for-step with Garn all the way to the finish line on the tough, rugged J-E course and finished in 20 minutes, 7.5 seconds – but that was behind Garn, who won in 20:07.3, just two-tenths of a second ahead.
Once that was settled, attention turned to the team battle, and though Skaneateles got 54 points to outclass the rest of the OHSL Liberty field, Westhill/Ludden beat them with 44 points amid the season’s coldest temperatures, plus wind and precipitation.
Madeline Adams made her way to sixth place, in 20:56.4. Julia Willcox took 14th place in 21:38.8, just ahead of Liz Dwyer, who was 15th in 21:40.4.
As that went on, though, Westhill/Ludden, led by Genny Corcoran’s third-place finish in 20:11.5, had its four best runners finish in the top 12, with Annibel Coolican (seventh, 21:02.7), Erin Morrell (ninth, 21:13.8) and Emily Washburn (12th, 21:33.7) finishing ahead of Willcox and Dwyer.
Then two more Warriors, Mary Kate Washburn (21:51.7) and Caroline Coates (22:03.9), finished in front of the Lakers’ fifth runner, Morel Malcolm, who was 22nd in 22:25.4.
Elsa Soderberg was 26th, in 22:37 flat, with Finan Malcolm 30th (23:27.3), Maria Schillace 34th (23:52.4) and Ginny Hamlin 42nd (24:32.8) in front of Jillian Van Leer (24:54.6) in the 50th spot.
Meanwhile, in the boys OHSL Liberty race, Skaneateles finished ninth in the 10-team field, picking up 197 points as Westhill/Ludden (36 points) beat host J-E (85 points) for the top spot and Marcellus’ Patrick McGuane won the individual race in a time of 17:48.3.
Among Laker runners, Cooper Watt did best, making his way to 15th place in 18:59.8, while Chris Niebuhr took 34th place in 20:03.2. Steve Ciaccio was 50th, in 20:53.5, while Joe Capozza, in 62nd (21:15.6), and Patrick Biver, in 65th place (21:18.3), finished in front of Dominic Grasso (21:38.5) and Nick Smolenski (21:49.5).
Skaneateles would now turn its attention to next Saturday’s Section III Class C championships at Jamesville Beach Park, with the girls favored to claim team honors and a berth in the Nov. 9 state meet at Queensbury.