Girls Cross Country Looks to Take Home Interschols Championship for 4th Straight Year

The Girls Cross Country team knows how to do almost everything, except lose. The team has captured the New England Championship for the past three years. And after last year’s undefeated season, Andover hopes to make it a four-peat. Last year, led by former Captain Jen Downing ’08, Abby Levene ’09, Stephanie Moroney ’09 and Captain Berol Dewdney ’09, the team marched through the season, beating every team it faced, including Choate, St. Paul’s, Northfield Mount Herman, Deerfield and Exeter. The girls dominated at Interschols with Andover securing the top three spots and all seven varsity runners finishing in the top 14. Levene finished with a course record time of 18:28, followed by Downing and Moroney. All seven girls were named to the Boston Globe’s “All New England Cross Country Team,” while Levene was named the league’s All-Star. This year, Captain Dewdney, Levene and Moroney return to lead another strong team with high hopes for another New England Championship. The girls will face traditional rivals Choate, Exeter, and Deerfield, as well as host the annual Andover Developmental Invitational, where team scores are not counted and runners at all levels, including coaches and alumni, have a chance to compete in a relaxed environment. The team boasts the strongest Senior class that it has in memory. Levene, Dewdney, Moroney, and Aubrey Zimmerling ’09 four of last year’s top seven, are all back and looking stronger than ever. Georgina Norton ’09, who missed last year’s season to attend the Oxbow School in California and Breezy Jordan ’09, back from an injury, promise to occupy two more of the varisty spots. Tavie Abell `10 looks to join the varsity squad this year, while stand-out JV runner Kristen Faulkner `11 is trying to make her way back from an injury that ended her spectacular start to last year. The team is preparing for the season with a rigorous training regiment, including long-distance and speed runs, as well as intense sessions in the pool. With the addition of new students and barring any major injuries, Andover expects to be excellent shape to succeed in capturing its fourth New England Championship in as many years. Last year, the top seven runners and one alternate explored unfamiliar territory by qualifying for and competing in Nike Team Regionals in upstate New York. Racing against the strongest teams in the Northeast for the first time, Andover finished fourth, just two places from qualifying for Nike Team Nationals in Oregon. Now familiar with the race, the girls hope to compete again and capture a spot at Nationals.