A picturesque fall day paced the boys and girls cross country teams to podium finishes at the Canterbury Invitational on Saturday, 9/24. One the boys side, Will McNamara ’18 and Ricardo Gonzalez ’19 finished in the top 10 and on the girls side, Victoria Patterson ’20 captured a first place finish.
Cross Country, Boys: Varsity vs. Canterbury Invitational
A perfect fall day greeted the Deerfield boys’ cross country team when they arrived at the Canterbury School for the annual Canterbury Invitational. Bringing together schools from across New England and the Mid-Atlantic, Canterbury presents teams with a challenging early season test and a first look at varsity lineups. After a few years of finishing out of the top three spots, Deerfield returned to the podium this year with a strong third place finish.
Canterbury’s hilly course begins with a relatively flat first mile, and the Deerfield harriers took advantage of the gentler beginning with fast opening efforts. With top-ten finishes in their sights, Will McNamara ’18 and Ricardo Gonzalez ’19 came through the first mile in 10th and 12th place, respectively. Working together to navigate the large chase pack, Ethan Thayumanavan ’17 and JJ Siritantikorn ’19 cruised through just behind their teammates, followed by Alex Weinman ’19, Donnie Sparks ’18, and Carter Hampson ’20, all competing in their first Canterbury race.
After a difficult second mile through Canterbury’s rolling hills, McNamara emerged from the woods in 9th and Gonzalez in 11th, and both athletes began a steady acceleration toward the finish line, picking off competitors one by one as they went. Ultimately, both of Deerfield’s top two finishers broke into the top ten, with McNamara capturing 7th and Gonzalez holding on for 9th. Thayumanavan and Siritantikorn both blew past their Canterbury times from last year on the strength of strong stretch runs, breaking the tape in 16th and 27th place, respectively, followed by Weinman who rounded out the Deerfield top five with a strong debut at 40th place overall.
When all the scores had been tallied, Deerfield finished in third overall behind a very strong Loomis Chaffee team and the Hotchkiss School. Another week of hard work lies in store for the Big Green harriers before one last invitational next Saturday, this time hosted by the Westminster School.
Cross Country, Girls: Varsity vs. Canterbury Invitational
The girls’ cross country team rocked a comfortable second place finish at the Canterbury Invitational on Saturday, defeating ten other teams in the process and improving on their third place finish last year. It was a classic beautiful autumn day with a warm sun and a light cooling breeze as the runners traversed the hilly course composed of a blend of fields and woods.
The team was led by the name-appropriate 9th grader Victoria Patterson’s stunning win in 19:11 (30 seconds over the second place finisher!), followed by 10th grader Lilly Shuhda 21:04, 11th grader Nora Markey 21:24, 9th grader Jane Mallach 21:39, 11th grader Carolyn Melvin 21:44, 12th grader Margot Genereux 22:02, and 11th grader Erin Hudson 23:36.
The girls head to the Miller Invitational at the Westminster School this coming Saturday where they hope to improve on their second place finish there last year. The momentum is now on the side of the Big Green as they wrap up early season invitationals with truly solid efforts and head into the meat of the schedule with head-to-head conference rival meets before wrapping up with the New England Championships. The future looks bright!
Go Big Green!
Complete results from the Canterbury Invitational can be found here:http://www.coolrunning.com/results/16/ct/Sep24_Canter_set1.shtml