Boys Cross Country Sweeps Weymouth


By Danielle Dentremont, Kate McLellan, and Charlotte Clarke

Walpole Boys Cross Country finishes their season with a final dual meet victory over Weymouth by 29 points with a score of 16-45 at the home course during senior night on Oct. 24th.  Junior Tyler Sullivan claimed first place while juniors Nathan Shnaider, Anthony Borelli, and Shane Grant trailed closely behind him within 12 seconds of each other.

Anthony Borelli finishes in 3rd place (Photo/ Kate McLellan)
Anthony Borelli finishes in 3rd place (Photo/ Kate McLellan)
Nathan Shnaider races up Porker Hill. (Photo/ Kate McLellan)
Nathan Shnaider races up Porker Hill. (Photo/ Kate McLellan)

“As a team, we are stronger than Weymouth. We were able to put 4 runners in front of their [first] one, and one runner directly after,” said Shnaider. “Today’s race was successful, but nothing we should get ourselves caught up in. We did what we had to do to win, and that’s that.” The team collectively upholds a positive mindset as they advance into the postseason, during which competition will be tougher.  In the past two weeks, Walpole has competed successfully to defeat both Milton and Weymouth. With a record of five wins and four losses, the boys feel that they are on an upward trend.  

“The high point of the season was when we beat Milton on their home course on their senior day.  I expected that we would lose because on paper they are better than us, but I hung with their top runner until I couldn’t,” junior Tyler Sullivan said. “That race was definitely a turning point in our season and it showed that we are capable as a team.”

Although the team agrees that winning against Weymouth was another step toward victory in the postseason, some of the boys feel that the best performances of the season are yet to come.  

Dan Forester finishes in 9th place. Weymouth's third finisher comes in close behind him. (Photo/ Kate McLellan)
Dan Forester finishes in 9th place. Weymouth’s third finisher comes in close behind him. (Photo/ Kate McLellan)


“I do not think the high point of the season has come yet,” said Shnaider.  “None of us are satisfied with our season so far, and we will not be satisfied with this season unless we are standing at the top of the podium on November 10th.”

Grant takes 4th place. (Photo/ Kate McLellan)
Shane Grant places 4th for Walpole.  (Photo/ Kate McLellan)

Part of the team’s struggle comes from injuries.

“A negative impact was the amount of injuries we’ve had. With the miles comes injuries,” said junior captain Anthony Borelli. “We’ve lost a few meets this season due to injured athletes, but all that matters is the postseason.”

Borelli views his team as the underdog among the pool of prospective contenders for the Divisional Championship.  Nonetheless, he is confident that the strength he and his teammates have acquired by running countless miles during the summer will continue to propel toward triumph in the postseason.  

“Today’s race was a big success. We need to all bring this power and confidence into our postseason,” said Borelli.

Since this meet took place on senior night, the team also celebrated their seniors and the impact that they have had on the team in the form of cake, balloons, and posters.  Some of the boys reminisced on how their seniors have influenced them.

“We have a small senior class this year, three kids. They all motivate us and are good at what they do,” said Borelli.  “I think the biggest impact they have on me is [that they make me] realiz[e] that the season flies by. After this season, I am only going to have one more chance to prove myself.”

Seniors- (left to right) Kevin Taylor, Alex Shnaider, and Alex Portanova stand with the posters their team made for them. (Photo/ Kate McLellan)

Nonetheless, Walpole plans to utilize their strong team dynamic and strategy of pack running to obtain the lowest scores and best placements as possible in their upcoming postseason races.  

“I think one of the main reasons why we are running well is that we are running as a team. Every day we run together in practice and workouts, and we just continued this into the meet and it has been successful for us,” said senior Kevin Taylor.

Ultimately, the team aspires to maintain their winning streak as they seek redemption from last year’s season during which they did not advance to the All-State Championship.

“Going into the postseason, I have a strong feeling we will continue to come closer as a team and perform as a team,” said Shnaider. “We thrive off each others momentum, so it is crucial we all show up prepared and ready to go.”