Post-Graduate (PG) Samantha Valentine ’17 claimed a first-place finish for Andover Girls Cross Country in the 37th annual Women’s 5K Codfish Bowl at Franklin Park, Boston, with a time of 18:26 minutes. With a total score of 153 points, Andover finished in fourth place in the team competition, behind Merrimack College, Phillips Exeter Academy, and Forest Hills.
Andover sent 13 of its best runners to race against several strong teams, including Dartmouth College, Harvard College, and Northeastern University. Despite the tough competition, Valentine and Michaela Jones ’18 dominated their opponents, placing first and second, respectively. With a time of 18:51 minutes, Jones crossed a full 30 seconds ahead of the third place finisher.
In an email to The Phillipian, Valentine wrote, “Codfish was a really interesting meet mostly because of the variance in competition… There were Division III college teams, club teams, unattached individuals, and other prep schools, so it was really anyone’s race.”
In addition to Valentine and Jones’s top finishes, newcomer Isabella Morzano ’18 finished with a time of 21:17 minutes, while Grace Rademacher ’18 clocked a time of 21:26 minutes. In her first appearance for the team, Jess Wang ’18 finished in 21:52 minutes.
Wang said, “The best part of Codfish was crossing the finish line with a smile on my face, and cheering for my teammates afterwards. The race had a good balance of hills and flat trails, and the weather was perfect for running: nice and breezy, but not freezing.”
Eva Chilson ’18 crossed the tape with a time of 21:54 minutes, and Olivia Brokaw ’18 finished at 22:37 minutes.
Despite the loss of last year’s Seniors, including the 2015 New England Preparatory School Track Association champion Carmen Bango ’16 and the runner-up Peyton McGovern ’16, Andover has filled its top seven with a deep field of determined runners.
Captain Morgan Rooney ’17 said, “The race was a huge success; everyone did so well. As it was the first race, nerves were a bit of a challenge, but we always keep this meet low-key which makes it a great first start. I think for the the rest of the season, we’re gonna look to build on our work so far and just keep going as one big team.”
Seeking its third consecutive New England Preparatory School Athletic Council championship, Andover will train even harder as the season progresses. Andover looks to continue its strong start to the season this Saturday at the Northfield Mount Hermon Invitational.
Editor’s Note: Jess Wang is an Associate Video Editor for The Phillipian.