On Saturday, September 30th, Deerfield Cross Country enjoyed a great day as a program, emerging victorious in all four races at the Richard Miller Invitational. Conditions finally resembled a typical fall day in New England for the Invitational as it was held at the Westminster School in Simsbury, Connecticut. Temperatures were cold, the wind was blowing, and the difficult Westminster course was in fine shape. On the day, Girls and Boys Varsity and JV teams all finished on the top spot of the podium.
Girls Cross Country
The Deerfield Girls’ Cross Country program took their show on the road once again, and the results were stupendous. The girls raced to victory in both the varsity and junior varsity races at the Miller Invitational at the Westminster School in Simsbury, CT. Both squads dominated the competition with stellar performances across the board, with the varsity girls scoring only 26 points in a field of eight teams. In that race, Deerfield was led once again by All-New England runner Victoria Patterson who finished second overall on the beastly hilly 5k course with a time of 19:17. Following the 10th grader from South Carolina was Vermont native and 9th grader Noelle Abeyta in 3rd with a time of 19:36, 12th grader and Mass native and All-New England runner Erin Hudson in 6th place (20:30), 12th grader Helen Downes from the Big Apple (21:09), 12th grader Sarah Jane O’Connor from the Nutmeg State in 8th (21:24), 10th grader Jane Mallach from the Garden State finished in 19th (23:05), and senior Nora Markey, a native of Western Mass, rounded out the top seven on this day with a time of 23:16.
In the JV race, Deerfield finishing with seven girls in the top ten runners out of eight teams fielded, scoring an unimaginably low 18 points among eight teams. Led by 9th grader Grace Russell of Cambridge, MA who won the race in 22:31, and followed closely by Esme Benjamin from the Big Easy in 22:40 (2nd), west coaster Ali Thomas in 23:23 (4th), home grown Ely Burke in 23:28.1 (5th), local legend Erin Howe in 23:28.8 (6th), Mississippian Sami Dulam in 24:05 (8th), Argentinian Sofi Sintes in 24:15 (9th), New Jersey’s own Anna Fu in 26:40 (23rd), Jamaican Acy (DC) Cai 26th (27:04), the Wolverine State’s Nafi Sail 35th (27:55), Greenfield’s own Piper Day 39th (28:04), New Yorker Jasmine Ramos in 42nd (28:06), and rounded out by AP Biology standout Jerilyn Zheng 54th (29:09).
Kudos to the girls, who all ran superbly, demonstrating their base fitness levels are right where they need to be and that they are ready to mix it up to get the job done. Next Saturday the teams move into the meat of the season, as the dual meets begin in earnest with a match against northern rival St. Paul’s, in Concord, NH.
Boys Cross Country
Like the girls, the boys team had an impressive sweep that saw Deerfield place five runners in the top 10 finishers of the varsity race, and six runners in the top 10 of the JV race.
In the varsity race, two runners from Westminster and one from Williston-Northampton School crossed the finish line first before a wave of Big Green harriers stormed across. Co-captain Will McNamara continued his great start to the season with a 4th overall finish, followed closely by Ricardo Gonzalez and co-captain Marco Marsans in 5th and 6th places. One non-Deerfield athlete snuck into the pack before ninth-grader Declan Cullinane broke the tape in 8th place, followed immediately by his teammate JJ Siritantikorn in 9th. Newcomers Jake Meier and Charlie Lewis took 13th and 15th places, respectively, to complete Deerfield’s varsity seven, with only 64 seconds separating Deerfield’s #1 and #7 runners.
The green tide was unabated in the junior varsity race. Ninth-grader Thomas Lyons outkicked his teammate Hayden McGuinness over the last quarter mile to capture 2nd overall behind a strong Westminster runner, with McGuinness holding on to capture 3rd. Close on his heels was another ninth-grader, Mat Panikar, completing his first 5K for Deerfield in 4th place. Chris Thagard (7th), Teddy McCarthy (8th), and Ian Gordon (9th) completed the Deerfield front pack. Other notable JV performances came from Christian Ransom and Seth Thayumanavan, both of whom turned in breakthrough races on a difficult course.
The growth for Deerfield’s boys team from 2016 to 2017 has been astounding. At this meet last year, in similar conditions, Deerfield’s #7 runner crossed the line in 21:11; this year, 13 Big Green runners equaled or bested that time. Similarly, the 2016 edition of Deerfield’s boys XC team had three runners at or below 18:40 at Westminster; this year, all seven of the varsity competitors met that mark.
All Deerfield runners have much to be proud of from the Invitational portion of their schedule, and much to look forward to with the dual meet season kicking off next weekend at St. Paul’s School in New Hampshire.
Go Big Green!
Girls Varsity: Deerfield wins with 26 points (8 teams)
Girls JV: Deerfield wins with 18 points (8 teams)
Boys Varsity: Deerfield wins with 32 points, to Westminster’s 37 (9 teams)
Boys JV: Deerfield wins with 24 points to Westminster’s 41 (11 teams)