CUMBERLAND — Greely High cross country coach David Dowling rested his top runners for the Western Maine Conference meet, then saw another week pass without a race when foul weather forced postponement of the Class B South regional last week.

So heading into the rescheduled regional Saturday at Twin Brook Recreation Area, Dowling wondered how his runners would respond.

“We did not taper for this meet, as we never do,” he said. “So they’re a little leg weary.”

It didn’t matter. The Rangers won decisively, the girls knocking off defending state champ Yarmouth by 23 points and the boys running away from two-time defending state champ Freeport by 39.

“Yes, a hard race takes more out of you than a hard workout,” Dowling said, “but we made up for it in the training sessions. We prepare for the end of the season.”

Yarmouth senior Abby Hamilton and junior Luke Laverdiere earned individual honors on a chilly, rainy morning. Hamilton put 23 seconds on a field of more than 100 girls and covered the 3.1-mile course in 18 minutes, 53 seconds. Carolyn Todd of Greely was second in 19:16 and her teammate, Katherine Leggat-Barr, the two-time defending champion, was third in 19:20.

“It’s a little shocking,” said Hamilton, who missed the Festival of Champions race in Belfast earlier this month because of injury. “I didn’t really expect this.”

Hamilton said her plan was to tuck in behind Leggat-Barr, throw in a fast second mile and see what she had left in her tank. Instead she led from the start.

“At 200 meters I was like, ‘Why not?’ ” Hamilton said. “I didn’t want to slow down to let people pass so I just stuck with it.”

Yarmouth and Greely were close through three runners, with Anneka Murrin of Yarmouth fourth and Grace Cowles 10th, and Kate Curran of Greely ninth. The gap came at fourth and fifth. Chloe Smith (13th) and Chloe Waldrep (14th) of Greely remained behind their Yarmouth counterparts until surging ahead on Twin Brook’s hilly A Loop in the final mile and finished within four seconds of each other.

The top eight schools as well as the top 30 individuals advanced to the state meet next Saturday in Belfast. York (90) finished third in the girls’ competition followed by Maranacook (119) and Cape Elizabeth (126).

In the boys’ race, Laverdiere hopped playfully across the finish line to win by 22 seconds over runner-up Henry Jaques of Freeport in 16:13, and nearly a minute over third-place Mitch Libby of Wells.

“Next week is a little more important than this week,” Laverdiere said. “I made a pretty decisive move at the one-mile mark to establish a lead and then just stayed relaxed after that.”

Laverdiere slipped and fell on the last turn on the slick grass.

“That was the only treacherous part,” he said. “Most of (the course) was decent because it’s gravel and it drains pretty well.”

Freeport and Wells each finished with 86 points but Freeport won the sixth-runner tiebreaker to take second. Lincoln Academy was third with 100, followed by Yarmouth (117), Cape Elizabeth (176), York (181) and Maranacook (187).

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