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A Wild day at BL Cross-Country Championships. Story by John Torsiello.

POSTED October 22, 2011
BY Rick Wilson
Twitter: @scribewilson

A Wild Afternoon at BL Cross-Country Championships



THOMASTON-It was thrills and spills at Friday’s Berkshire League cross-country championship meet.

Shepaug’s Logan Ross nipped Terryville’s Tyler Raymond by only a half second to win the boys individual title, Nonnewaug’s boys edged out Lewis Mills by two points to capture the team title, and Thomaston’s Sabrina Olsen took a tumble on the 3.1-mile course that helped Northwestern’s Annemarie Tuxbury win the girls individual crown at Black Rock State Park.

The only result not in question on an overcast, cool day was the Thomaston girls winning their fifth straight BL championship, this time by whopping 46 points over runner-up Litchfield.

Ross, a junior who ended the Thomaston boys’ six-year hold on the top spot, put a strong kick on during the last 20 meters of the race to pass Raymond at the finish line.

The Shepaug runner had gone by Raymond about 800 meters from the finish line, but the Kangaroo senior retook the lead with only 20 meters remaining. Ross, a soccer player turned cross-country runner, was not about to be robbed of his victory as he sped to the finish line and finished first in a time of 16:55.06.

"We went out fast and with a mile to go I was about five seconds behind the lead pack," said Ross. "I told myself that I had to go and catch them and I did with about 800 meters left. Then Tyler passed me and I had a little kick left and just got him at the end."

Said Shepaug coach Tom Scarola, whose team finished fourth, "I’m happy for Logan. He’s learning how to race and has had great competition this year. It’s going to be fun because a lot of the top guys are juniors and will be back next to push Logan."

In the boys team raced, the Chiefs edged out the Spartans by a scant two points, 60-62. Nonnewaug avenged their only loss of the dual meet season (ironically by two points) last week at the hands of Mills, which brought an unbeaten BL mark into Friday’s big meet.

"Our fourth and fifth guys (Sean Bodnar and Dmitry Gulak) ran so much better today and that was the key," said Nonnewaug coach Arleigh Duff, whose team won the BL title two years ago. "If you had seen them at the beginning of the season you would never have believed they could do what they did today."

Bodnar finished 20th and Gulak 21st to support teammates Jonah Riolo (4th), Dan Nolte (5th), and Vincent Pistritto (10th).

Lewis Mills got a third from Kevin Sullivan and a ninth from Jackson Morrow, while Tyler Lyon was 15th, Cullen McHale 16th and Michael Mudgett 19th.

"We had three guys in the top 10 today, which was fabulous," said Duff. "I’m so proud of his team. We got upset by Shepaug last year when we came in unbeaten and we wanted to win badly this year. The kids really came into the season in great shape and they had obviously done a lot of work on their own during the summer to prepare for the fall. I always thought we would be a better invitational meet team than a dual meet team and today proved it."

Tuxbury finished 10 seconds ahead of Thomaston’s Olsen, with the Northwestern star clocking a 19:19.82 for the 3.1-mile course at Black Rock State Park. Tuxbury’s margin of victory was aided by a fall Olsen endured midway through the race that cost her several valuable seconds.

"We really went out fast and it kind of tired me out," said Tuxbury, a senior. "When Sabrina fell I wasn’t right next to her so I was able to avoid bumping into her. I felt pretty good today and had enough left at the end to win pretty comfortably."

Thomaston coach Mark Olsen said his top girls had a plan to attack Tuxbury Friday and try to get a Golden Bear runner across the finish line first, although the plan did not materialize.

"Sabrina and I didn’t talk but she had a plan to try and beat Anne Marie today. We have the utmost respect for Annemarie, but it’s nice to see our girls want to try and win the race against the favorite coming in."

Sabrina Olsen was followed by teammates Cameron Chaplen in third, Becky Perugini in fifth, MacKenzie Blair in eighth, and Sarah Guay in 14th. Thomaston is so deep its sixth and seventh runners (Hannah Abbott and Bryttnie Thomas) placed 23rd and 25th respectively.

"We ran a good race today," said Mark Olsen. "Putting four in the top 10 and five in the top 14 is really something. We have had goals and this was one of them and now we will go after another one of our goals next week."


Berkshire League Cross-Country Championships

Black Rock State Park in Thomaston

3.1-mile course


Girls Team Results: Thomaston 32, Litchfield 78, Northwestern 79, Shepaug 91, Nonnewaug 106, Lewis Mills 142, Housatonic 188, Wamogo 196.

Top 20 Individuals: 1. Annemarie Tuxbury (North.), 19:19.82; 2. Sabrina Olsen (Thom); 3. Cameron Chaplan (Thom); 4. Stephanie Deccy (LM); 5. Becky Preugini (Thom); 6. Kathleen Wysocki (North.); 7. Bridget Nicholas (Non.); 8. MacKenzie Blair (Thom.); 9. Sydney Hock (North); 10. Clara Wolfe (She.); 11. Sara Peterson (L); 12. Julia Thomkins (L); 13. Kelsey Hall (Sh.); 14. Sarah Guay (Thom); 15. Sarah Simaitis (L); 16. Katie Francis (Non.); 17. Gina DeMeo (She.); 18. Raquel Riolo (Non.); 19. Olivia Nordland (L); 20. Marguax Maxwell (She.).


Boys Team Results: Nonnewaug 60, Lewis Mills, 62, Thomaston 76, Shepaug 94, Litchfield 111, Terryville 126, Northwestern 147, Wamogo 232, Gilbert 279, Housatonic 285.

Top 20 Individuals: 1. Logan Ross (She.) 16:55.06; 2. Tyler Raymond (Ter.); 3. Kevin Sullivan (LM); 4. Jonah Riolo (Non.); 5. Dan Nolte (Non.); 6. Owen McMahon (Thom.); 7. Cody Brennan (She.); 8. Joe Wihbey (Lit.); 9. Jackson Morrow (LM); 10. Vincent Pistritto (Non.); 11. Luke McMahon (Thom.); 12. Matt Mona (North.); 13. Seth Abbott (Thom.); 14. Scott Shaw (North.); 15. Tyler Lyon (LM);16. Cullen McHale (LM); 17. Ryan Gannon (Lit.); 18. Maverick Gosselin (Lit.); 19. Michael Mudgett (LM); 20. Sean Bodnar (Non.).


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