Andover Harriers Race to Second Place at Interschols

BOYS CROSS-COUNTRY Boys Cross Country sent two squads of seven runners to compete in the NEPSTA Division One Championships at the Varsity and JV levels. In one of the tightest championships in recent history, Andover returned to campus with a hard-fought first place finish in the JV race and a frustrating second place at the Varsity level. The top Andover runners ran smart for the start, and after the first uphill section a surprising number of opposing runners fell back. This left Chris Donais ’05, Idris Jatoi ’05, and Sean Hamilton ’06 to chase down the leaders and penetrate the top 15 finishers. Exeter’s first, Arno Ferguson ’05, dominated the field, setting a new course record of 16:23. Exeter then crossed two more runners for sixth and seventh. Andover took tenth and 11th with strong finishes by Hamilton (17:28) and Donais (17:31). Having jockeyed for position for most of the race with Exeter’s fourth, John Hillman ’05 and Ben Bramhall ’07 closed the gap but couldn’t quite catch the red harrier by the line. They crossed together with a time of 17:55 for 19th and 20th places. Will Riordan ’05 rounded out the Andover squad with a solid top 30 finish in 18:19. Even with six runners in the top 20, Andover could not keep up with Exeter’s strong top three, giving the Big Red a 59-67 win. St. Paul’s finished next with 84 points. In the JV contest Andover placed veteran Seniors Geoff Miller ’05, Wes Howe ’05, and Jon Weigel ’05 to help claim victory. Howe won the race in 18:23, followed by three Loomis runners in the top 10. Andover then crossed the trio of Thomas, Miller, and Greg Hsu ’06. Thomas crossed in 11th with a time of 18:51. Miller and Hsu crossed the finish line two seconds later. Weigel, running alone, rounded out the top 15 overall. The total score of the front five runners from both Loomis and Andover resulted in a tie, which was broken by the placement of each team’s sixth runner. Nick Bowen ’06, running in his first interschols, propelled the team to victory by finishing seconds ahead of the sixth runner from Loomis. GIRLS CROSS-COUNTRY With a score of 80 overall, the Andover Girls Cross-Country Team took home second in the NEPSAC Interscholastic Championships last weekend, Said Coach Nancy Lang of the race, “We were trying for first, and we didn’t quite make it, but it’s much better to have tried for first and gotten second than tried for only second.” Exeter’s top runner, Lauren Brady, broke the course record of 20:12 with a time of 19:57. The Lady Blue’s Erika Roddy ’07 finished in third place with a time of 20:16, only three second behind Exeter’s second runner. Katie Faulkner ’06 crossed next for the blue in fifth. Faulkner had an incredible first two miles as she tried to hold on with the pace of Brady, maintaining a six-minute mile pace. In the last mile, however, Faulkner lost energy and fell from second to fifth place, completing the race in 20:44. Jen Downing ’08 was the next Andover runner to cross the finish line in 13th place. In a very tight finish, with only milliseconds between all three girls, a Deerfield runner placed 28th, chased down by Katherine Adams ’06 in 29th and Katie Morris ’07 in 30th. This pair was followed by Debby Kuhn ’05 in 34th place, and Becca Waldo ’07 in 38th with a 22:51. Andover also secured second place in the JV. The surprise of the day was when Sarah Ho ’08 finished first with a time of 22:29. Finishing next for Andover was Kendra Allenby ’05 in sixth place. Chris Sargent ’06 had a very successful day and finished eighth for the team. Co-Captain Alison Murphy ’05 followed in ninth, with Emma Wood ’07 in 10th and Co-Captain Anne Sharp ’05 in 11th. Rachel Reinauer ’07 rounded out the JV top seven group in fourteenth place with a time of 23:39.