Carmen Luisi, Holliston girls in charge of business in Division 2 cross-country state qualifier

“It felt good today,” Holliston coach Jamie Murphy said. “Obviously we were in a tough spot because I think we had the worst of the game because it was raining when we started. But the team played as expected [and] Just as they hoped. “

Holliston took part in the first race of the day when the morning rain was at its heaviest. Lewis won in 18:34.99, Maggie Kuchman (18:57.37) was third and Annabelle Lynch (19:15.75) was sixth. Given the weather, Murphy found the Panthers’ performance admirable.

“The conditions weren’t ideal, but it’s off-road and it’s November, so we knew we had to control what we could control, and everyone was in the same conditions,” she said. “So we went out and executed.”

The Panthers won a preliminary round at the Bay State Invitational at Fort Devens Field, which will be the stage for the state championship game. But next Saturday’s race will feature fewer hills after officials made tweaks to the track. Holliston didn’t run the fastest team game in the state qualifiers, and the Panthers believe they have untapped potential.

“They’re catching up to the states now,” Murphy said. “We know today isn’t our fastest time. We know there are more in the tank, so that’s exciting.”

Holliston is the favorite, but Whitinsville Christian should be a serious contender. A solo victory by eighth grade standout Abby Flagg (18:47.04) propelled the Crusaders to a total of 35 points in a dominant victory in District 2C. Amherst-Pelham won the DoubleA race thanks to a solo victory by senior Tamar Byl-Brann.

On the boys’ side, Burlington (71 points) proved it was the team to beat in the Division 2. The dynamic senior duo of Rithikh Prakash (15:45.26) and Eric Sekyaya (15:59.85) finished third and fourth respectively, leading the Red Devils in Double-A. Nashoba’s Adam Balewicz won in 15:25.98.

Falmouth senior Henry Gartner set the fastest time of the day with his 15:19.25 leading the 2B race by almost a minute. Holliston (136 points) finished second behind Groton-Dunstable (94 points), qualifying for the statewide competition for the first time since 1993.

Norwell edged out Triton (74 points) and Dover-Sherborn (103 points) with 63 points for a narrow 2C victory. Clippers junior Thomas Corbett led the game with a winning time of 16:10.97.

3rd division

Uxbridge’s Aidan Ross and Northbridge’s Marcus Reilly should be in the statewide individual matchup. Ross (16:00.96) set the fastest time of the day at Gardner Municipal Golf Course to win the Men’s 3B Qualifier and Reilly (16:11.87) finished first in the 3A. Lenox senior Dennis Love (16:48.85) won the Division 3C race (16:48.85).

Norfolk Aggie junior Madelyn Germain continued her stellar season with a time of 19:53.35 in the women’s triple-A race. East Bridgewater’s Ella Dunbury finished second to Germain in the state pros with a time of 20:23.39 for the 3B victory. Bromfield’s Evelyn Wool (19:59.61) took the 3C crown.

Both Weston teams had their glory days. The Wildcat boys kicked off the team’s win in Triple-A with a 74 in third place from Carsen Valenta (17:20.56). Alessandra Gavris (20:25.04) used her second-place effort in the women’s Triple-A event to lead Weston to a landslide victory (38 points).

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