BoB15 Meet Hub – all videos, interviews, and photos will be up soon!
As hoped for, the 15th Battle of the Border was filled with phenomenal competition throughout all of the races! Not only was the competition fierce in the traditional sense, but the added interstate friendly rivalry between NH and Massachusetts added that something extra special to the day. Of course, the good guys (NH) swept the varsity races, but hopefully this will inspire other Massachusetts teams to send their squads next year!
With the weather perfect for fall XC racing, and the course firmed up, courtesy of our wet fall, and the dedication of Alvirne’s coaching and maintenance staff, times were as fast as the competition fierce. In the end, NH teams flexed their muscle with one school in particular having a great day.
The Coe-Brown girls JV squad took 5 of the first 7 places as well as 7 of the top 11 en route to a team win scoring a scant 23 points. CBNA freshman Amelia Edmonds took the individual win in 20:56 as she pulled away gradually beginning at the mile. Bedford’s Alexis Mahoney and Avery Houghton were second and third both clocking 21:21. The Lady Bears employed a pack mentality taking the next four places with Kiersten Ranfos (21:39), Libby White (21:48), Kylee Blad (21:48), and Olivia Noni (21:57) working together the entire race. Niamh Russell of Bedford would place 8th in 22:06, Manchester Memorial’s Paige Graziano took 9th in 22:08 with CBNA’s Savannah Marsh rounding out the top 10 in 22:13. Bedford would place second in the team race scoring 40 points while Winnacunnet was third scoring 122 points.
The Boys JV Race was a bit tighter, especially the competition for the individual win. Winnacunnet’s Hayden O’Hara and Coe-Brown’s Porter Heigis battled over the vast majority of the fields and trails. O’Hara pushed the pace the entire way intelligently trying to shake Heigis eventually opening up an approximate 15 meter gap as they were finishing up their final woods loop. Heigis certainly bent, but did not break, as he finally caught O’Hara just before the exit into the final 200 meters to sprint to the win in 17:16. O’Hara would finish in 17:24. Londonderry’s Christian Smith placed 4th in 17:43, while Cavan Black (Lowell) would split Lancers taking 5th place in 17:54 with Londonderry’s Chris Burpeau taking 6th in 18:02. Black’s teammate James Affiah would complete the seesaw placing 6th in 18:08 and then it was Coe-Brown’s Isaac Wells (18:09) and Aidan Ahern (18:10) teaming up for 7th and 8th. Winnacunnet’s Nicholas Beal placed 9th in 18:11 while Lars Hogne would make it three in the top 10 for the Bears with a 18:12 clocking. With four in the top ten and five in the 13 (Tyler Rose, 18:19), the Bears would take this one with 39 points to Londonderry’s 61 points and Winnacunnet’s 79 points.
The Girls’ Varsity Race would wind up be the closest contested team race of the day as 4 NH ranked teams competed hard throughout the course waging phenomenal team battles. In the end, the top 2 schools would be separated by only 12 points and 3rd and 4th place decided by 1 point! After a race which saw Coe-Brown battle Salem throughout each other’s top 5, the #5 ranked Coe-Brown Bears placed their top 4 in front of every team’s third to take this one 77 to 89. All this while Bishop Guertin, benefiting greatly from the Caroline’s 1-2 finish, would edge Bedford by the 1 point for third. Caroline Fischer would lead this one gun-to-tape in 18:35 as her teammate Caroline Towle rolled to a 18:39 runner-up finish. Rounding into racing form, Milford’s Lauren Robinson placed 4th in 18:42. Addison Cox led CBNA’s effort placing 4th in 19:00. Supporting her effort were teammates Abigail O’Connor (12th, 19:44), Ella Malone (17th, 20:03), Miranda Compton (24th, 20:21) and Autumn Graham (31st, 20:40).
Placing 5th was Bedford’s Carly Rinko (19:24), and 6th was Jessica Fontaine (19:29) of host Alvirne. Salem freshman Bethany Graham would place 7th in 19:31 leading her team to an again gutsy performance and runner-up finish. Supporting Graham were Natalie Coryea (11th, 19:40), Emma Gannon (26th,20:24), Silvia Caddell (28th, 20:32) and Erica James (30th, 20:38). Tyngsborough’s Sophia Campbell (19:35), Milford’s Abby Halloran ((19:36), and North Andover’s Courtney Dalke (19:38) would round out the top 10.
The Boys Varsity Race pitted D2 Coe-Brown v. D1’s Winnacunnet and Londonderry with the individual laurels up for grabs as well. Close over the first half of the race, it was NH#2 Coe-Brown placing three ahead of Londonderry’s and Winnacunnet’s second as well as five in front of their fourths to win with 48 points. The Bears were led by super sophs Luke Tkaczyk (5th, 16:00) and Wyatt Mackey (6th, 16:07). Dawson DuBois was not far behind in 8th (16:11) with Gavyn Lewis placing 12th in 16:23 and Logan Mihelich finishing 18th in 16:38 to round out the Bears’ scoring. Off the strength of Colin Donnelly’s runner-up finish in 15:51, Winnacunnet would place 2nd scoring 77 points with Londonderry only 4 points behind with 82 points (beating Lowell, MA on the tiebreaker).
Individually, Donnelly was the early leader pulling the front pack through the first half of the race, but it was Campbell’s Jeffrey Allen who saved his best performance of 2018 for the Battle. Running an intelligent race, Allen waited until the second half to begin to steadily pull away to win in 15:46. The aforementioned Donnelly was second in 15:51, Lowell’s Jadiel Pinales was 3rd in 15:56, Brockton’s Imanuel Fernandes placed 4th in 15:58. Pinales’s teammate, Joeben Jacobs broke up CBNA’s trio by placing 7th in 16:10 with North Andover’s Jack Bicksler (9th, 16:12) and Londonderry’s Matt Griffin (10th, 16:18) rounded out the top 10.
Congrats to all who competed and a hearty thanks to the Alvirne community for hosting another successful BoB! Here’s to another NH overall win. Massachusetts, we are calling you out, in the most friendliest of ways, to show up in force next year!!!