Top Three Runners Defy All Doubt

Andover Boys Cross Country surprised the field at Interschols on Saturday by staying with the leaders to seize a 4th overall finish out of 14 teams. Andover’s top three runners placed 13th through 15th overall, within mere seconds of each other at the finish. “At the beginning of the season, we were expected to place eighth or ninth at Interschols, since we had some injury troubles and we had lost some Seniors,” said Ethan McIntosh ’15. Whittall was Andover’s first runner to finish and took 13th place with a time of 16:10. He was followed by Fung with a time of 16:11 in 14th place and Ethan McIntosh in 15th place. The rest of Andover’s Varsity runners came in close behind, with Kailash Sundaram ’15 in 48th at 17:02, Matt Fischetti ’14 in 56th at 17:11, Scott Diekema ’14 in 57th at 17:11 and Chase Gottlich ’14 in 65th at 17:23. Overall, Exeter took first place, North Field Mount Hermon second place, Choate third, and Andover fourth. McIntosh, Ian Whittall ’14 and Kevin Fung ’13 all received New England Honors and qualified for the NEPSTA All-Star meet. “The Varsity team’s fourth place finish was excellent and reflected the exceptional hard work, commitment and development of this team,” said Coach Jeffrey Domina. “The runners built up more and more intensity in their training as well as in their racing, during the second half of the season in particular. They built momentum and tapped all their strengths in order to finish ahead of where anyone would have expected back in September. I’m proud of them.” This year, the Loomis Chaffee School hosted the championship race, which took place at Northwest Park in Windsor, Conn. With a 1-4 dual-meet record this season, Andover was not a favorite heading into the race. Exeter, undefeated, was expected to dominate. Exeter’s varsity pack was led by frontrunner Kieran Scannell PEA ’13. Scannell held back at the beginning of the race but soon jumped to the front and widened the gap and finished as the individual champion of the meet with a remarkable time 15:24. McIntosh said, “Over the course of the season, we improved individually while coming together as a team. Interschols was a great way to finish the season, and next fall our team is returning six of our seven Varsity guys. We are all super excited and ready to work extra hard when the 2013 Cross Country season rolls around.”