Girls XC Face Disappointments At The Divisional III Meet


An athlete running hard the last 200 meters of the race.

Danielle Levya

An athlete running hard the last 200 meters of the race.

Walpole Girls Cross Country ended their season sooner than they expected to. Despite all their successes, on Saturday November 10, the girls ran in the MIAA EMASS Divisional III meet at Wrentham Development Center unable to qualify for states. The top four teams  advanced to All-States and the top ten individuals after them. As a team, the girls were seeded 5th but they finished in seventh place. “Going into the meet, we had some injuries towards the end of the season. It came down to do we want to do well in the regular season or in post season? We  chose to focus more on the regular season this year, which makes us more aware of this for next year” said Coach Jamie Farrell.

At the beginning of the race, junior Gina Conti ran in the top pack of girls as Walpole’s first runner. Senior Megan Peterson and junior Kristen Coyne ran together further behind Conti.  Behind Peterson and Coyne, freshman Alyssa Murphy ran by herself which is hard to do, but she was only seconds behind. Junior Mackenzie Wilson and sophomore Emma Cambell ran together pushing each other to be closer to Murphy. Junior Jackie Applin ran by herself, working hard to catch Campbell and Wilson. Halfway through the race, a few girls had stepped up, but some fell back which adjusted the girl’s positions. Conti had fallen back due to her irritated hamstring. Peterson had stepped up to pass Conti, and Coyne followed Peterson’s lead to try to support the team without Conti in front. Wilson was inching her way up to Murphy to work together.  Applin worked her way up to Campbell to run with her, and ended up passing her working to catch up with Wilson and Murphy.
At the finish line, Peterson was the first Walpole runner across with a time of 22:20.40. Peterson was three runners away from qualifying as an individual to All-States. Coyne finished right behind Peterson with a PR of 20:25.30. Coach Gillian Quann said, “Kristen did exceptionally well considering it is such a hard course to PR on.”  Twenty seconds behind Coyne, Conti struggled across the line at 20:40.40, a minute off her PR. Murphy and Wilson ran together finishing only seconds apart from each other. Murphy finished at 21:35 and Wilson crossed the line at 21:38.90. Applin also did exceptionally well – making a personal best by 10 seconds with a time of 22:02.70. Emma Campbell finished three seconds behind Applin.
This year, Whitman-Hanson finished on top again destroying the course with a score of 51. In second place, Concord-Carsile finished with a score of 100. Notre Dame Academy- Hingham recieved the title of third place reaching a score of 121. Clinching the last place to move on to All-States, Oliver Ames stole fourth place with a score of 145. The predictions of the meet were accurate. The teams that were seeded as the top four teams were the teams that were able to excel to All-States. Compared to last year, Oliver Ames moved from second place down to fourth. Concord Carlisle moved up in the standings from third place to second place. The Rebels did place ahead of Wellesley, last year’s fourth place team.  Walpole’s final score was 236 and Wellesley finished with a score of 287.  “Considering the intensity of the season, the girls did well” said Quann.
Despite the disappointing post- season, the girls had a successful season ending with a record of 8-3 and the title of Bay State Herget Champions. The girls may not have advanced to All-States this year, but they are already setting their goals for next year. Next year the Rebels hope to beat the records they set this season and win the Herget again, but also excel to All-States.