Finish sixth overall at Div. 4 meet, two runners advance to All-States
WRENTHAM — The Warrior boys’ cross country team is a force to be reckoned with and should continue to be a contender at the state level evidenced by its showing at the Div. 4 Eastern Mass. State Championship meet held on Saturday at the Wrentham Developmental Center.
Wakefield had a very good showing as it placed sixth for the second consecutive year (out of 22 teams). But this time the Warriors accomplished that feat without one of the top runners in the state in Aaron Lucci to give them a low number.
Wakefield scored 188 points total. Marblehead won the meet with 63 points and Gloucester was second with 97 points. Melrose (108 points), Pembroke (109 points) and Tewksbury (119 points) secured third, fourth and fifth overall.
Sophomore Jack Stevens placed 23rd overall with a much improved time of 17:11.1 on the 5K course. He will race at Franklin Park next Saturday morning as he qualified as an individual to compete in the All-State meet.
“He has gradually come along during the season and his confidence has been growing so that he could have the type of race he had this Saturday,” said Coach Perry Pappas. “I look forward to seeing what he can accomplish going forward.”
Senior co-captain Jackson Gallagher will join Stevens at Franklin Park in the All-State meet as he qualified by placing 29th in a time of 17:21.8, also a big personal best. It is the first time Gallagher is going to the All-State meet.
The rest of the Warriors had a great days as well. All seven runners came under the 18 minute barrier to show the impressive depth they have created as a team. Wakefield had the smallest gap in the race with just 44 seconds separating the first to seventh runner. Most of the teams gaps range from one to two minutes or more said Pappas.
“The boys have been able to race close all season and push each other to run better in the process,” said Pappas.
Junior Richie Custodio placed 36th with a personal best time of 17:29.4, junior Alec Rodgers placed 48th with a time of 17:49.6, and freshman Robert Shaw placed 52nd with a time of 17:51.7 to round out the scoring to the 188 team points.
Sophomore Ryan Sullivan was right on Shaw’s back placing 53rd in a time 17:52.9 while freshman Matt Greatorex was also very close in 57th place with a time of 17:55.2.
“With six of these athletes as well as a stable of other boys to fill in any gaps, the Warriors look to return as one of the top teams competing for the title in 2015,” said Pappas.
The All-State Meet will be held Saturday at 11:40 a.m. at Franklin Park.