September 12, 2013

High School Cross Country: Runners and teams to watch

GIRLS  

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Kirstin Sandreuter of Greely, center, and Brittany Bowman of Camden Hills, left, will be close again this year while competing for the Class B title.

John Ewing/2012 Press Herald file

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Liam Simpson of Cape Elizabeth is usually easy to find near the finish line. He’s either in front or not far away, helping his team to a state title last year.

John Ewing/2012 Press Herald file

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TEAMS TO WATCH

GIRLS

1. Greely: A dozen years have passed since the Rangers won a state title and Mt. Desert Island will be a tall hurdle, but Greely's 1-2 punch of Kirstin Sandreuter and Eva Bates got a boost when Kristina Smith, a former Western Maine Confererence champ, tranferred from Poland. Krista Marble leads the rest of an experienced pack that should challenge for Class B supremacy.

2. Bonny Eagle: An infusion from field hockey and soccer helped the Scots win their first Class A title last fall. This year another former soccer player -- sophomore Kalighi Marston -- joins an already formidable contingent that includes seniors Mary Szatkowski, Kristen Glennie, Audrey Weyand and Zoe Goodwin, and junior Kyaunna Libby.

3. Camden Hills: The defending Eastern Class B champion Windjammers lost four of their top eight runners, but a pair of talented freshmen, Emma Trapani and Emily Kessel, should help fill the void. Former Class B state champ Brittany Bowman leads a returning pack that includes classmate Lily Kassen, junior Ella Scott and sophomore Jacqueline Russell.

4. Brunswick: The top 10 runners return from the team that fell three points short of the Eastern Class A title. Junior Ruth Van Kampen, a transfer from Washington state, further strengthens a mix that includes seniors Teresa Murphy and Anna Turner, junior Brooke Escoe, and sophomores Tessa Cassidy and Tiffany Tanner.

5. Massabesic: The Mustangs return four of the top five runners from the Class A runners-up last fall. Junior Gabby Johnson leads a young pack that includes classmate Leah Ridley, sophomores Maquila Dimastrantonio, Emily Wasina and Erin Leach, and seniors Angel Waters and Jolene Lampron.

BOYS

1. Cape Elizabeth: The Capers won the Class B title and finished best among Maine schools at the New England meet with a squad of undergraduate scorers. Seniors Liam Simpson and Peter Doane match up with any top pair in the state. Classmates Will Britton and Julian Pelzer, and junior Kyle Kennedy return. The addition from soccer of junior Mitch Morris should overcome the loss to football of sophomore Justin Guerette.

2. Scarborough: After two straight state titles, the Red Storm fell to third in Class A last fall but qualified for the New Englands. With Jacob Terry leading the way, Scarborough posted five of the top 14 times in the recent 13-school SMAA Relays. The others came from senior Ian Morris, sophomore Colin Tardiff, and juniors Sean McGovern and Jacob Bloom, who played soccer last fall.

3. Falmouth: After winning Class B in 2011 and placing second a year ago, the Yachtsmen move up to Class A with a roster of 46 boys (more than are playing football). Juniors Bryce Murdick, Scott Lambert, Spencer Brown and Iain Kurry, and sophomores Josh Simensky and Sean Soucy all return from the top seven, and junior Matt Simmons is the leading candidate to join them.

4. Massabesic: The Mustangs return five of their top seven runners as they attempt to defend their Class A state title. Juniors Michael Aboud, Remington Gaetjens and Andrew Mongiat all placed among the top 30, and senior Branden Pratt wasn't too far behind. Sophomore Troy Cloutier, junior Tom Harrington and senior Justin Langlois add depth.

5. Gorham: The Rams were fourth in Western Maine and seventh in Class A last fall with an all-undergrad top six. Sophomore Jesse Southard was the state's top freshman. Returning with him are seniors Jeremy Collett and Thomas Bradshaw, and juniors Ben Foster, Matt Esposito and Mitch Rossignol (who is recovering from a foot injury).

-- Glenn Jordan, Staff Writer

 

Eva Bates, Greely, junior: Fourth in Class B last fall. Also placed 55th in New England with the fastest time of any Maine sophomore or freshman. 

Brittany Bowman, Camden Hills, senior: Third in Class B last fall after winning the race as a sophomore. Twice placed among the top 25 in New England. Led the Windjammers to the Eastern Maine title. 

Tessa Cassidy, Brunswick, sophomore: Ninth in Class A last fall with the fastest time of any freshman in any class to help Brunswick finish fourth. Also placed 84th in New England. 

Shannon Conley, South Portland, senior: Fourth as a freshman, sixth as a sophomore and fifth as a junior in Class A while running for Cheverus, which won two state titles with Conley. 

Heather Evans, York, senior: Placed 14th as a junior, sixth as a sophomore and 20th as a freshman in Class B. A former WMC champion, she won a four-school meet last week at York. 

Gabrielle Johnson, Massabesic, junior: Placed 10th in Class A last fall to help the Mustangs win the runner-up plaque. Also placed 10th as a freshman, leading Massabesic to third. 

Casey Loring, South Portland, sophomore: Eleventh in Class A and 77th in New England. Posted the fifth-fastest time in the SMAA Relays in Saco earlier this month. 

Teresa Murphy, Brunswick, senior: Placed 14th in Class A last fall and eighth as a sophomore. Won a seven-school meet last week at Maranacook. 

Kiera Murray, Cheverus, senior: Fifth in Class A as a sophomore and seventh as a junior. Contributed to two state titles at Cheverus. Placed 53rd in New England. 

Kirstin Sandreuter, Greely, senior: Class B runner-up who placed 13th in New England, the second runner from Maine. Fourth among Maine women at the Beach to Beacon. 

Kristina Smith, Greely, junior: A transfer from Poland High who placed fifth in Class B last fall and 15th as a freshman. Western Maine Conference champion as a freshman. 

Mary Szatkowski, Bonny Eagle, senior: After coming over from soccer, she placed fourth in Class A to lead the Scots to their first state title. Fifth Mainer at the New Englands, 35th overall.

BOYS  

Michael Aboud, Massabesic, junior: Western Class A runner-up who placed 11th at the state meet to help the Mustangs win the team title. Second-best time in Class A as a freshman in 2011. 

Ben Allen, Portland, senior: Seventh in Western Class A and 17th in the state meet last fall. Posted the third-fastest time in the SMAA Relays in Saco. 

Braden Becker, Yarmouth, senior: Fifth in Class B last fall in a time (16:51) that was sixth-best among underclassmen. A Nordic skier who plays tennis in the spring instead of running track. 

Ryan Cadorette, Thornton Academy, senior: After three years of high school soccer, his first cross country competition resulted in the fastest time in the SMAA Relays in Saco. 

Ben Decker, Yarmouth, senior: A four-year soccer player, Decker's 32:41 Beach to Beacon time (a 5:16 pace) was the fastest of any Maine teenager. 

Peter Doane, Cape Elizabeth, senior: Ninth in Class B to help the Capers win the state title last fall. Also placed third in Western Maine, fifth in WMC and 107th in New England. Eighth in Class B as a sophomore. 

Jack Letellier, Marshwood, senior: Twelfth in Class A last fall and fifth in Western Maine. Posted the second-fastest time in the SMAA Relays. 

Bryce Murdick, Falmouth, junior: Eleventh in Class B last fall and the top sophomore to lead Falmouth to second place. Won the WMC 3,200 title in the spring. Runner-up to Simpson in the 2013 opening meet. 

Will Shafer, Gray-New Gloucester, senior: The 800-meter champion in Class B who placed 10th in the cross country state meet last fall. Won a four-school meet at York last week. 

Liam Simpson, Cape Elizabeth, senior: Sixth in Class B to lead Cape Elizabeth to a state title. Also placed 33rd in New England and last week won a three-school opening meet at home. 

Jesse Southard, Gorham sophomore: Fastest freshman in any state meet last fall, finishing 19th in Class A. Won the recent Wilkinson Memorial Race (5K) in Gorham by more than a minute. 

Ben Trapani, Camden Hills, senior: Eastern Maine runner-up who placed third in Class B last fall and 62nd in New England, eighth among Mainers. Won a six-school meet last week in Winslow. 

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