After road trips to New Jersey and Vermont the previous two weekends, the Southington cross country teams returned home last week to begin preparation for the CCC championships. The boys and girls returned to Camp Sloper Oct. 8 for a meet against NW Catholic.
Coach Dan Dachelet said that coming off a tough meet in Vermont, the team was careful with their pace in their first meet back home since Sept. 17.
“The meet Tuesday we treated as a workout for about 75 percent of the squad after coming off a hard race Saturday in Vermont,” Dachelet said. “Most folks ran at 80% pacing for the 5K and then either did another mile or two at 85%, picking it up. The workout went great and was set up to be challenging for them.”
Despite not running at 100%, the boys and girls put up impressive performances as they both picked up the victory against the Lions.
The Southington boys improved to 4-3 with a 22-39 win. They placed second, third, fourth, sixth, and seventh while NW Catholic placed first, fifth, 10th, 11th, and 12th.
While first place belonged to Noah Winters of NW Catholic with a time of 18:38.9, the next three spots belonged to the Knights. Matthew Penna finished second in 18:47.0, Lucca Riccio was third in 19:19.6, and Jake Nafis came in right after Riccio at 19:20.3.
Ryan Asido was the next to finish for Southington, coming in sixth in 19:49.7, followed by Jackson Landino in 19:59.5. Drew Nafis and Matthew Maciejewski did not count towards the team score but finished eighth and ninth with times of 20:09.7 and 20:24.3, respectively.
Southington had 13 runners finish in the top-15.
The Lady Knights had their most impressive win of the season, defeating the Lions 15-46. Southington took up the entire top-five to give them their score of 15. NW Catholic placed sixth, seventh, 10th, 11th, and 12th.
Grace Michaud and Jackie Izzo came to the finish neck-and-neck, but it was Michaud who finished first in 21:53.9, followed by Izzo in 21:54.2. Meghan Sheline came in third in 24:13.9, and Diane Pillsbury finished fourth in 25:34.9. Megan Wadman rounded out the top-five with a time of 25:37.0.
Emily Moskal and Hannah Cooley did not count towards the team score but both finished in the top-10. Moskal came in eighth 26:50.5 and Cooley finished right behind her in 26:59.0. The Lady Knights also had 13 runners in the top-15.
Up next: The CCC Championships were scheduled for Wednesday at Wickham Park in Manchester. Last season, the boys finished fourth in the championships while the girls finished third.
To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Spencer Dreher, email him at SDreher@SouthingtonObserver.com.