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October 11, 2008 at Van Cortlandt Park, New York NY.   DyeStat on-site.

Girls Team
US#1 Fayetteville-Manlius nearly breaks course
record -- and they weren't even 100 percent.

by Jim Lambert

Fayetteville-Manlius nearly broke the course record average with its victory in the girls’ Eastern States Championship race yesterday. And the scary part is that it wasn't even running at 100 percent.

The No. 1 team in the nation and two-time defending Nike Team Nationals Champions had one runner home sick and another caught a stitch halfway through the race. But the New York powerhouse still blitzed the loaded field with a 14:40.26 five-runner average and 55 points.  Fayetteville Manlius’ average is No. 2 in course history, just missing the course record of 14:39.74 set by Saratoga Springs of New York at this meet in 2004.  Fayetteville-Manlius jammed four runners in the top 13, led by runner-up Courtney Chapman (14:14.3), left,  and seventh place finisher Mackenzie Carter (14:32.9). 

Tatnall of Delaware, No. 14 nationally, was second with a 14:59.3 average and 112 points. No. 20 Queensbury of New York was third with 155, No. 8 Burnt Hills of New York fourth with 168, No. 12 Lincoln- Sudbury of Massachusetts  fifth with 173, No.  5 Saratoga Springs sixth with 184, No. 19 Midlothian of Virginia seventh with 194, and No. 10 Shenendehowa of New York eighth with 194.

Fayetteville-Manlius was missing Kathryn Buchan (home with the flu) and one its usual scorers, junior Hannah Luber, felt a sharp pain in her side during the race and was the sixth finisher for her team.

``If you told me before the race that not only would we not have Kathryn, but Hannah would catch that stitch, then I certainly think we exceed our expectations with what we did out here today,’’ said Fayetteville-Manlius coach Bill Aris. ``We had some runners really rise up today.’’ 

One in particular was senior Meaghan Anklin, 21st overall and No. 5 for her team  in 14:59.6. ``I try to run my hardest in every race and when I went by Hannah and I knew something might be wrong, so I tried to push it even harder for my team today,’’ said Anklin.

After Chapman, a sophomore, and Carter, a junior, crossed, Fayetteville’s No. 3 runner was freshman Katie Sischo, 12th in 14:43.6, and junior Molly Malone was No. 4, 13th in 14:51.1.

``Our goal was just to come here and win and running fast is a byproduct of that,’’ said Carter. ``We’re trying not to really think about trying to win nationals again, but obviously it’s a goal of ours to get back to Oregon for nationals and see what we can do.’’

Aris likes what he sees.

``We’re a stronger team this year because we are deeper and I think we were faster today than last year because of that strength,’’ he said. ``And I think we can keep getting faster.’’

Girls Eastern States results

 3. Danielle Winslow
4. Kathleen Lautzenheiser
5. Lizzie Predmore

photos by John Nepolitan

 6. Juliet Bottorff
7. Mackenzie Carter
8. Shelby Greany
9. Sam Roecker
10. Haley Pierce