Laemel leads Amity at Class LL cross country race
Last Saturday’s CIAC Class LL boys cross country championship was in reality a showcase for the Southern Connecticut Conference.
Not only did Xavier, the recently-crowned SCC champs, win the LL title with 64 points, four of the top six teams were from the SCC.
Hamden was second (126), followed by Danbury (138), Cheshire (139), Staples-Westport (148) and Amity (150). The championship race was held at Wickham Park in Manchester.
“We ran about as well as we did in the SCC championship race,” Amity coach Bob Orgovan said. “We finished behind Xavier, Hamden and Cheshire in both races. Coming in, I was hoping we’d run a little better but everybody was a few paces off. My ultimate hope was to be second and we ended up only 24 points away from that and 12 points out of third place. With a very good day, we could have ended up second or very close to second. Unfortunately, we ended up having only an OK day.”
Ryan Laemel led the Spartans by finishing fourth out of 143 runners with a time of 16 minutes, 47 seconds over the muddy 3.1-mile course. By finishing among the top 12 runners, Laemel has earned All-Class recognition.
John Coco (18th—17:31), Dean Bhatt (22nd—17:36), Sam Spencer (52nd—18:17), and Clark Shurtleff (54th—18:20) completed the list of the Spartans’ top five runners.
Fairfield Prep’s Connor Rog is the top Class LL runner. He completed the Wickham Park course in 16:19.
“We needed to pack tighter together,” Orgovan said. “The results were about what many people expected, but I know that we can do better. Xavier (the state’s top-ranked team) ran a little better in this race than it had in the SCC championship race and won by a larger margin.”
By placing among the top six Class LL teams, Amity has qualified for the State Open which will be held on Friday at Wickham Park.
Orgovan’s goal for the Open is to have his team place among the top six and qualify for the New England championship race, which is slated to be run Nov. 14th at Wickham Park.
“If we run the way we are capable of running, we can be one of the top six teams and go on to the New Englands,” Orgovan said.
Lady Spartans place 11th
The Amity girls cross country team finished 11th out of 20 teams at last week’s CIAC Class LL championship at Wickham Park in Manchester.
“We ran better here than we did the previous week at the Southern Connecticut Conference championship meet because we ran closer together,” Amity coach Sean Mahon said. “We didn’t place very high, but we didn’t expect to. There were no high expectations, no pressure and nothing to lose. All things considered I thought we ran rather well. Everybody knows that we have a young team that is rebuilding this year. With only one of our top seven runners being a senior, things look very bright for us next year.”
Saran Beland not only led the Lady Spartans across the finish line with a time of 21 minutes, 30 seconds (which placed her 32nd out of 127 runners), it also qualified her for the State Open, which will be run on Friday back at Wickham Park.
Katie Beland (37th—21:37), Jane Depgen (48th—21:49), Leanne Beedle (57th—22:09), and Hannah Block (77th—22:37) followed Sarah Beland across the finish line.