The Cambridge Cross Country team had its first timed race of the season in an intra-squad time trial on Saturday, August 17. After a week of high temps that impacted athletic practices across the metro area, 39 Lady Bears and 66 boys laced up to cooler temps at 8am to run 2 miles on the Cambridge Cross Country trail, and determine placement for their first official meet of the season on August 24.
The boys' race kicked off the morning fun, with Anders Law ('20) and Lyle Donovan ('22) leading the sleuth, the term for a pack of bears, on the three loop run. Anders finished in 10:50, with Lyle two seconds behind him at 10:52. Five seconds later, Deacon Law ('20) crossed to clinch third place. Yahya Merchant ('20), having been injured early in the summer, finished strong in fourth with a time of 11:25. Close behind were junior Kaine Dudley, edging out Will Carrow ('20), who just started running as a junior last year, by .02 seconds. Their times of 11:28.26 and 11:28.28 earned them 5th and 6th place honors. The final two runners to close out the top 8, were Adam Schaich ('20) in 11:32.21 and Cole Suplee ('21) a second behind in 11:33.20. The first freshmen on the team to cross the line were Dillon Shin and Luis Fettes, with times of 12:50.13 and 12:50.33 which made for a great race to the finish with sophomore Ashton Foraker between them. The boys' team has a strong shot at making the state podium again this year, and we are looking forward to a great season beginning with the Bob Blastow Early Bird meet next Saturday.
The girls' race started soon after the last boy crossed the finish line, and, like the boys, the top runners made an early move and set a solid pace for the others to follow. Senior Ashley Sechrest and freshmen Anna Filipek, new to Cambridge but a veteran runner and decorated triathlete, started with a quick pace for the first loop, after which Ashley continued to widen the gap and finish the three loop race in 12:09 - besting her winning time from last year by about 10 seconds. Anna reached the finish in 13:04. Crossing the finish line in third place at 13:31 was junior Lola Merrill, with Kathryn Suplee ('21) just behind her at 13:34, and cross country newcomer Camilla Montes ('22), having given up cheer to run starting in the track season, finished in 13:38. In sixth, Isabel Filipek ('21), had a time of 13:53 and was followed by Katie Malone('22) and senior Afton Hirschi, a four year varsity runner, in 13:59 and 14:05 for 7th and 8th place. The top eight generally make up the varsity team for the initial meet of the year. The first freshmen newcomer for the ladies, other than Anna, was Allyx Berry. Allyx crossed the finish line in an impressive 15:18 for 13th place out of the 39 Lady Bears. The girls' team will be trying to go for their third straight 6A title this year, and we're looking forward to watching their progress to the state meet in Carrollton on November 1.
These athletes started running in May in preparation for this season, with several running 400+ miles over the summer to be ready for this season. From the first to the last to cross the line, they all ran a determined and successful race on Saturday and are to be commended for not giving up, and being a part of #sleuthrunning. We wish the team the best of luck at their first meet of the season at the Bob Blastow Early Bird Invitational, run at McIntosh Nature Preserve in Whitesburg on Saturday, August 24.