Varsity and JV teams take fifth, freshman squad finishes second

THE WMHS boys’ cross country team had an impressive showing at the Middlesex League championship meet. The varsity and JV teams earned fifth place finishes and the freshman boys took second. (Donna Larsson File Photo)

THE WMHS boys’ cross country team had an impressive showing at the Middlesex League championship meet. The varsity and JV teams earned fifth place finishes and the freshman boys took second. (Donna Larsson File Photo)

WOBURN — In dual meet competition, teams from the Middlesex League run against clubs from their own division and have two non-league meets against a pair of squads of the other division. However in the Middlesex League Championships, runners from all 12 M.L. schools compete in the same meet.

The Wakefield Memorial High boys’ cross country team had a good showing against its M.L. brethren as it captured fifth overall on Monday afternoon at the Woburn Country Club.

The Warriors scored 139 points in the team scoring and did better than four of its M.L. Freedom division rivals. Wakefield also scored better than three M.L. Liberty division teams.

Wakefield beat out Reading (sixth, 151 points), Burlington (seventh,178 points), Belmont (eighth, 190 points), Woburn (ninth, 198 points), Watertown (10th, 254 points), Wilmington (11th, 321 points) and Stoneham (12th, 372 points).

M.L. Liberty division power Lexington won the entire meet with 32 points, while newly crowned M.L. Freedom division champ Melrose was second with 71 points. Winchester and Arlington finished in third and fourth with 96 and 114 points.

There were some great individual performances by the Warriors in the meet.

Jackson Gallagher, a senior co-captain, had an outstanding eighth place showing with a fast 13:15.70 over 2.5 miles.

Coach Perry Pappas felt it was amazing that, although Gallagher’s greatest strength lies in events like the 400, 600 and 800 meters on the track, he was able to show his range and toughness in a hilly cross country race and compete against many great distance runners in the league.

Sophomore Jack Stevens ran a great race placing second for the team and 29th overall. Stevens posted a time of 14:06.90.

Juniors Richie Custodio and Alec Rodgers followed Stevens immediately after and sophomore Ryan Sullivan was just a few places behind.

Custodio and Rodgers finished in 31st and 33rd place with times of 14:08.70 and 14:09.70, while Sullivan clocked in at 14:16.30 for 38th place.

Chris Skeldon, a junior, rounded out the varsity runners for Wakefield. Skeldon finished in 68th place out of 82 runners and posted a time of 15:18.00.

The Warriors that competed in the Boys’ JV Race race ran well and placed fifth as a team and was the first among Freedom division teams. Wakefield scored 117 points.

The JV was led by junior Tyler Whipple who captured 18th place overall with a time of 15:04.60.

Whipple was followed by sophomores Ty Collins and Jackson Kehoe. Collins finished in 24th place at 15:16.90 and Kehoe secured 26th place in a time of 15:19.30.

Juniors Adam D’Ambrosio and Jeremy Keegan also ran well to round out the scoring for the Warriors in the JV race. D’Ambrosio finished in 31st place at 15:22.70 and Keegan came in 32nd with a time of 15:23.50.

The Warriors had 10 more runners entered in the JV race.

John Stanfield and Shahnawaz Anwar, both sophomores, took 45th and 49th as they posted times of 15:39.20 and 15:45.80.

Jared Matos, a senior, and Justin McGonagle, a sophomore, finished in 68th and 75th place with times of 16:13.60 and 16:19.50.

Taking 83rd among the 184 runners was Mike Frezza, a sophomore, who clocked in at 16:34.10.

Sophomore James Connors, senior Nick Hill and junior Joe Picano claimed 95th, 99th and 100th in the race with times of 16:45.60, 16:48.60 and 16:49.50.

Brian Lomasney and Cal Sylvia, both sophomores, finished in 109th place and 175th place. Lomasney clocked in at 17:03.10 and Sylvia posted a time of 19:33.60.

The best team performance came in the Freshman Boys’ Race as the new crop of Warrior runners had a fantastic day placing three runners in the top 10. The freshman course was 1.3 miles.

Matt Greatorex chased three Lexington boys and finished fourth with a time of 6:47.00, well ahead of the 7:00 winning time from last year.

Robert Shaw placed a strong eighth in a time of 7:01.90 and Tommy Lucey was a solid 10th with a time of 7:05.40.

Riley Brackett, Sam Morey, Nolan Collins and David Lee all ran well to help the Warriors to a second place team finish behind Lexington. Wakefield scored 82 points for second.

Brackett finished in 40th place in a time of 7:50.80.

Morey was 51st overall along the 93 runners as he clocked in at 8:25.80.

Collins took 58th place in a time of 8:42.10.

Lee posted a time of 9:08.60 which was good for 72nd place.

The Woburn Country Club has been the site where the league championship meet has been held for over 40 years. With the split in the league three years ago into two tiers, the M.L. meet gives all teams a chance to face off against the other 11 teams which isn’t done in dual meet competition anymore.

The Warriors will travel to Wrentham this Saturday for the MSTCA Coaches Invitational. That meet is at the Wrentham Developmental Center.

On Saturday, Nov. 8, Wakefield will be back in Wrentham to compete in the Eastern Mass Div. 4 meet.