Cross country Wildcats win at Jamesville Beach

WG beats C-NS with four boys in top five

— In its first big competition of the fall, the West Genesee boys cross country team stepped up and, led by a swift quartet of front-runners, earned a victory over Cicero-North Syracuse in Saturday’s Chittenango Invitational.

Competing on the same Jamesville Beach Park course where they’ll hold the Section III championships on Nov. 2, the Wildcats and Northstars pulled away in Varsity Race 1, and WG, with 23 points, held off C-NS, who had 41 points.

Not only that, but WG won the merged competition when all three races were computed together. The Wildcats had 83 points in that portion, with Rochester McQuaid (the team winner in Race 2) second and C-NS third.

Somehow, the Wildcats landed four of the top five positions in a 222-runner field, led by junior Will Randall, who covered the course in 17 minutes, 2.5 seconds to earn the victory, with senior Jack Erhard in second place (17:07.7), more than five seconds behind.

After C-NS’s Andrew Bearkland finished third (17:08.9), the Wildcats’ other top runners charged to the line, with freshman David Leff fourth, in 17:09.9, and senior Nate Conroy (17:12.4) sliding into fifth place. No one could catch the Wildcats now.

Further behind them, Sean Beney got 11th place, in 17:44.5, while Mike Lannon finished 13th in 17:49.7. Logan McAnulty (18:16.4) finished 20th as Matt Romano (18:36 flat), Mike Richards (18:49.0) and Ryan Dunning (18:56.3) added further depth, all finishing within the top 35.

WG’s girls team, running without star senior Laura Leff, still managed a fifth-place finish in Varsity Race 1 with 137 points as Skaneateles (56 points) edged C-NS (60 points) for the top spot.

Maria Matkoski led the Wildcats, finishing 21st in a time of 21:33 flat, edging out teammate Elise Dunshee (21:33.9) by less than a second for that spot. Rachel Flynn was 29th, in 22:06.9, with Sarah Ferranti 32nd (22:19.7) and Elisabeth Beardsley (22:40.2) also in the scoring column. Maggie Guinto (22:51.0), Annie Baker (22:58.9) and Alicia Sakran (23:06.9) also had top-50 efforts.

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