Bronxville's Cain takes NYS Federation XC title
FALLS – If you asked for anything more out of the New York State Federation
Cross Country Championships on Saturday, then you were greedy.
was dressed spectacularly for the occasion – sun-drenched and with the right
mix of remaining, colorful fall leaves interspersed with bare trees signaling
the end of one season and the start of another – and the races were equally
High School’s Mary Cain won the girls’ individual championship with a
tremendous burst over the last third of the race, leading her team to a
second-place overall finish behind Saratoga, and Arlington High School team
stayed with the pack and finished second overall in the boys’ race to Shaker.
of Christian Brothers Academy in Syracuse won the boys’ individual title. Pearl
River finished fourth in the girls’ team competition; Warwick Valley was eighth
in the boys’ race.
engaging sophomore, emerged from the woods down the long finish line past a
cheering crowd with nobody behind her. Literally. She caught West Genesee’s
Laura Leff with a little over a mile to go and just blew by her. Leff was about
200 yards behind. Cain covered the 5,000-meter course in a time of 17 minutes,
40 seconds, a personal best and the third-fastest girls’ time ever run at
Bowdoin Park. In fact, she got the triple crown as she also won the Section One
and New York State Public High School Athletic Association titles.
“I just kind
of hung right with her and told myself we have to get up the hill and get by
it,” Cain said. “I tried to elongate my stride and put as much into it as
possible. It helped to know the course, to know where the hills are.”
Ah, the hills.
Or, The Hills. Bowdoin not only is one of the most beautiful settings for cross
country, it’s also one of the most challenging courses in the country. It’s
basically an out and back course, but it’s also a rolling hills course, and right
in the middle is a difficult climb, about 1,000 meters, that winds up and then
“It’s a rolling
hills course, and I just think it’s one of the best all-around,” race director
Bob Baratta said. “The key to this course really is not to think there’s a
magic place to make your move. You have to get to the hill in pretty good shape
and come off the hill ready to run.”
said Arlington boys’ runner Sibby Hanson, “can make or break you.”
Eddie Merenda and Hanson finished seventh and 17th, respectively, to
help the Admirals to the second-place overall finish.
“We expected a
fast pack, and it played out exactly that way,” Hanson said. “It either helped
you or didn’t. For us, we’re all interchangeable.”
“We run as a team,” Merenda said, “and that’s all that matters.”