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New York Region
Bowdoin State Park, Wappingers Falls NY
November 24, 2007

Girls Preview

Small field promises a race for the ages
Defending NTN champion Fayetteville-Manlius may be better than last year

by Dan Doherty, DyeStat New York girls regional editor

With only eight teams toeing the line for Saturday’s New York Girls NTN Regional qualifier at Bowdoin Park, one might think that the race lacks quality. Nothing could be further from the truth!!

Leading the way will be US #1 Fayetteville Manlius, the defending NTN Champions from 2006. Despite running most of the year without top runner from last year, Kathryn Buchan, Fayetteville is actually having a much better season then last year. Whenever and wherever they have run this year, they have left their opponents in their wake. Saturday’s race should be no different.

Leading the way will be Courtney Chapman, MacKenzie Carter and Hannah Luber. Although the other four runners are so close, they to could be in the very top of the race. Not only is Fayetteville the best team in the race, but they are also the deepest.

The battle for second should be one for the ages. It should come down to NY #2, Saratoga, NY #3 East Aurora, NY #4 Greenwich, NY, #5 Burnt Hills, NY #6 Warwick, and NY #8, Arlington. Rounding out the field will be Syosset.

Saratoga, Greenwich and Burnt Hills have done battle all year long both on the course and in mythical merges at meets. It has usually come down to a few points each time, with all of the teams trading wins. Burnt Hills has had some injury problems, (Meghan Gregory & Molly Pezzulo) and time will tell if they are healthy enough to mount their charge here. There are also rumors floating around that Saratoga will be running without their top star, Hannah Davidson. Since the race conflicts with the Northeast Footlocker Regional, Davidson might run their instead. Again, we will all have to wait to Saturday to see where she appears. The Burnt Hills injury factor and FLNE Saratoga decision could leave the door wide open for Greenwich. They have gotten better each week this year, and having been pointing for this race all year.

East Aurora, Warwick and Arlington are not your usual filling out the field teams.  All have shown tremendous potential and are just waiting to step to the line and show the world that they too are deserving of all the attention that the other teams have been getting.

At Large bids a big factor too

Although, most would concede the top berth to the finals to Fayetteville Manlius, the other teams will not only be racing for the second berth, but to impress the NTN Committee enough to garner an at large berth. With the field so deep, and only four at large berths being offered throughout the entire USA, each spot in the final standings could make a huge difference.

We will all have to wait to Saturday to see just who is ready to continue XC and who goes home to prepare for winter track. Regardless of the outcome, this race promises to be one for the ages!!