Class B Boys XC Preview

(pictured above 2008 Class B State Champion Alex Moser of York)

Class B Boys Western Maine

Team Title

The Greely Rangers were the dominate team in Western Maine Class B in 2008 and will look to continue that trend in 2009. The Rangers return a strong squad, headlined by senior Mark McCauley (3rd in 2008 – 16:31.75 pictured left) & senior Logan Price (5th in 2008 -16:57.29). With two guys under 17 on the challenging Twin Brook course gives the Rangers an edge over the rest of the league. The rest of returning Greely squad is talented as well with junior Sam Johnston (11th in 2008 – 17:31.34), junior Sam Humphries (20th in 2008 – 17:39.69) & junior Conor Regan who didn't run  regionals last year but was 25th at the satte meet.

     Cape Elizabeth, the runner-up in 2008, returns a squad with its eyes on challenging Greely for the top spot. Top returner is senior Peter Brigham (16th in 2008 – 17:36.10 pictured right), also back is sophomore Thomas Bottomley (21st in 2008 – 17:45.92). Along with the return of junior Reid Douty & the supporting cast of junior Sean Thomas (25th in 2008 -17:56.88), senior Bobby Yokabaskas (28th in 2008 -18:02.17) & junior Leo Ledman (37th in 2008 – 18:29.8) give the Capers a strong nucleus.

     Look for 2008 upstart Yarmouth to continue its success in 2009. The Clippers have a strong core back led by three juniors, Andrew George (12th in 2008 – 17:32.63), Ben Nickerson (14th in 2008 – 17:33.74 pictured right) & Ben Woodbury (19th in 2008 – 17:37.14) Also back from a 4th place team in 2008 is senior Sam Woodbury (22nd in 2008 – 17:53.89) & fellow classmate Samuel Peterson (43rd in 2008 – 18:39.68). Yarmouth hopes to continue its upward trend in 2009.

     The Yachtsmen of Falmouth are a perennial contender in Western Maine, and 2009 should be no different. Falmouth is coming off a 3rd place finish in 2008, and returns star sophomore Tim Follo (7th in 2008 – 17:06.97 pictured right) who was the top freshman in Western Maine last fall. Also back is senior Charlie Swerdlow (24th in 2008 – 17:55.70) 7 sophomore Conor McGory (31st in 2008 – 18:09.42). Despite returning just three of the top 7, the Yachtsmen have a strong program full of tradition and should be in the mix once again.

    York was 5th in 2008, and has a shot to move up the ranks even further in 2009. The Wildcats are led by one of the top XC runners in the state in senior Alex Moser (2nd in 2008 – 16:27.32). Joining Moser is senior Tristen Palhof (15th in 2008 - 17:34.69), senior Dan Herbein (23rd in 2008 – 17:55.01), senior Aaron Waldman (44th in 2008 – 18:40.20), & junior Silas Freeman (49th in 2008 – 18:53.38). Experience is on the side of the Wildcats as their top 4 are all seniors.

Other Teams

Freeport: 8th place in 2008. #1 returner is junior Griffin Day (36th - 18:22.18). The Falcons also will have top track 3200m runner Henry Loughlin running this fall.

Fryeburg Academy: 6th place in 2008, qualified for the state meet. Top returner is senior Kenedi Hall (8th in 2008 – 17:10.19)

Gardiner: 13th place in 2008. Top returner for the Tigers is sophomore Mike Tarrio (35th – 18:40.97). Gardiner moved from Eastern Class B to Western this year.

Gray New Gloucester: 12th place in 2008. #1 returner is junior Ben Schaeffer (35th - 18:19.85)

Lake Region: 11th place in 2008. Top returner is senior Thomas Jamison (70th - 21:06.31)

Leavitt: 6th place in 2008. Top returner is junior Keith Lemelin (30th – 18:35.33). Leavitt moved from Class B east to western maine this year.

Lincoln Academy: 10th place in 2008. Senior Gary Ward (30th - 18:08.42) is the #1 returner.

Maranacook: 7th place in 2008, qualified for the state meet. #1 returner is senior Justin Greely (32nd - 18:16.06)

Poland: 9th place in 2008. Top returner is sophomore Jake Rivard (86th - 24:06.63)

Wells: 13th place in 2008. Senior Joe Barry (65th - 20:20.37) is the top returner for the Warriors

Individual Title

The individual title looks like it should be a two man at the front of field this fall, with Alex Moser (York pictured below on right) the top returner (16:27.32) & Mark McCauley (Greely) the #2 returner who clocked 16:31.75 last fall. This could be quite a duel, but don’t count out McCauley’s teammate Logan Price (pictured left) who is one of the grittiest distance runners in the state. Price is more than capable of running with both Moser and McCauley, evidence by his impressive times over 3200m on the track. Tim Follo’s freshman year was superb, his 7th place finish last year was just the beginning as he went on to nab a 10th at the state meet. Running 17:06.97 as a freshman on the challenging Twin Brook gives you an idea of his talent, will he be able to take it to the next level, we will find out soon.

I can see this being a two man race with Moser and McCauley battling it out all the way down the home stretch. Moser showed the talent he had last year by finishing second then going on to win states. McCauley has the home course advantage and this being his senior year will be hungry to end up on top. Can these two run away from everyone else? Or will it be someone else ready to make a statement?

Top 15 returners

 2 Moser, Alex               York                 16:27.32     2 
 3 McCauley, Mark            Greely               16:31.75     3 
 5 Price, Logan              Greely               16:57.29     5 
 7 Follo, Timothy            Falmouth             17:06.97     7 
 8 Hall, Kenedi              Fryeburg Academy     17:10.19     8 
11 Johnston, Sam             Greely               17:31.34     11 
12 George, Andrew            Yarmouth             17:32.63     12 
14 Nickerson, Ben            Yarmouth             17:33.74     14 
15 Palhof, Tristan           York                 17:34.69     15 
16 Brigham, Peter            Cape Elizabeth       17:36.10     16 
18 Eastman, Seth             Fryeburg Academy     17:36.65     18 
19 Woodbury, Ben             Yarmouth             17:37.14     19 
20 Humphries, Sam            Greely               17:39.69     20 
21 Bottomley, Thomas         Cape Elizabeth       17:45.92     21 
22 Woodbury, Sam             Yarmouth             17:53.89     22 

Class B Boys Eastern Maine

Team Title

The team title is wide open in Eastern Maine Class B in 2009. A handful of teams should contend for the title this fall. Also Hampden Academy, formally of Eastern Maine Class A has joined the Class B ranks this fall. The Vikings of Caribou (pictured left) will be looking to make it two titles in a row, last fall they won the crown by 32 points over runner-up Ellsworth. The Vikings will be led by the trio of senior Finn Bonderson (13th in 2008 – 17:42.55), senior Tim Freme (15th in 2008 – 17:50.85) & junior Christian Sleeper (16th in 2008 – 17:58.87). Also returning is junior Jake Michaud (39th in 2008 – 18:54.12). The Vikings always have big numbers so finding someone to fill the 5th spot shouldn’t be a problem.

Perennial top team Ellsworth (pictured left) will be in the mix once again. Led by 2008 runner-up Ben Chapman, the Eagles are hoping to catch the Vikings in 2009. The supporting cast is senior Dakota Hellum (26th in 2008 – 18:27.91), sophomore Steven Kirby (32nd in 2008 – 18:37.72), senior John Carlin (51st in 2008 – 19:20.24) & senior Kyle Ouelette (71st in 2008 – 20:15.76). One thing is certain Ellsworth always seems to peak at the right time, by the end of the season they’ll be right there once again.

Mt. Desert Island had a strong 2008 campaign; nabbing a 3rd place and advancing to the state meet. They were led by two underclassmen, junior Sam Swann (19th in 2008 -18:07.44) & sophomore True Muzzy (20th in 2008 – 18:12.16). MDI also has senior Peter Logue (29th in 2008 – 18:32.51), junior Cameron Klausky (42nd in 2008 – 19:01.88), & senior Jeremy McQuinn (50th in 2008 – 19:19.67) returning to the squad in 2009.

Caribou looks like it has the talent to make it two in a row; the other teams will be chasing them this fall. History has shown never to count out Ellsworth though, or could this be a big year for MDI? What are the chances a new team emerges and surprises everyone?



Other Teams

Belfast: 5th place in 2008, qualified for the state meet. Top returner is senior Ryan James (4th – 17:09.26).

Erskine Academy: 7th place in 2008. Defending champion senior Sam Seekins (16:39.49) leads the way.

Hampden Academy: 7th place in Class A in 2008. Junior Evan Piccirillo (16th – 17:32.73) is the top runner for the Broncos, who are moving down to Class B in 2009. Track standout Darik Frye will be running xc this fall for Hampden too.

Hermon: 12th place in 2008. #1 returner is senior Jared McCartney (20th – 18:34.70)

John Bapst: 9th place in 2008. Sophomore Gabe Stewart is the top runner for the Crusaders (3rd – 16:52.61). Stewart finished 12th at the state meet last fall.

Medomak Valley: 4th place in 2008, qualified for the state meet. #1 returner is senior Patrick O’Donnell (6th – 17:18.26)

Old Town: 15th place in 2008. Junior Matt Foster is top returner (81st – 20:53.93)

Presque Isle: 12th place in 2008. Top returner is junior Logan Thibeau (36th – 18:42.67)

Rockland: 14th place in 2008. #1 returner is William Watson (23rd – 18:23.69)

Waterville: 10th place in 2008. The Purple Panthers have two top runners in senior Mike Nelson (5th – 17:16.52) and junior Jeff Hale (12th – 17:34.43)

Winslow: 8th place in 2008, qualified for the state meet. Top returner for the Black Raiders is junior Colby Levesque (17th – 18:03.45)


Individual Title

Coming into 2009, senior Sam Seekins (Erskine Academy pictured left) is the favorite to defend the Class B Eastern Regional title. Last fall Seekins cruised to victory by 12 seconds over Ben Chapman (Ellsworth pictured below on right). Seekins had a tremendous spring track season where he won both the 1600m & 3200m at the Class B state meet. Ellsworth XC has a long tradition of producing top notch distance runners, and this year is no different as senior Ben Chapman looks to improve on his solid junior campaign. Chapman was the Regional runner-up in 2008, clocking 16:51.88. Gabe Stewart was just a freshman last year; he certainly didn’t run like one. Stewart finished 3rd in Regional meet, running under 17 minutes, with his 16:52.61. If Stewart can improve on his rookie campaign, he should be able to challenge for the title this fall.

It looks like these three have the best shot to take the title, but whoever has done there summer training will certainly have the edge. Don’t count out senior Ryan James (Belfast pictured right) who was 4th last year, senior Mike Nelson (Waterville) 5th last year, or 6th place finish Patrick O’Donnell (Medomak Valley pictured left). Can Seekins repeat his title or will it be another Eastern Maine title for a runner from Ellsworth? Can the sophomore keep improving or will it be a new face at the front of the race? Stay tuned as the season progresses to find out who is in shape to make a run at the title.



Top 15 Returners

  1 Sam Seekins               JR Erskine Academy       16:39.49    1
  2 Ben Chapman               JR Ellsworth             16:51.88    2
  3 Gabe Stewart              FR John Bapst            16:52.61    3
  4 Ryan James                JR Belfast High School   17:09.26    4
  5 Mike Nelson               JR Waterville            17:16.52    5
  6 Patrick O'Donnell         JR Medomak Valley        17:18.26    6 
 10 Ryan Widzgowski           JR Camden Hills          17:30.22   
 16 Evan Piccirillo           SO Hampden Academy       17:32.73   16 
 12 Jeff Hale                 SO Waterville            17:34.43   11 
 13 Finn Bondeson             JR Caribou High School   17:42.55   12
 15 Tim Freme                 JR Caribou High School   17:50.85   14
 16 Christian Sleeper         SO Caribou High School   17:58.87   15 
 17 Colby Levesque            SO Winslow High School   18:03.45   16 
 19 Sam Swann                 SO Mdi                   18:07.44   18 
 20 True Muzzy                FR Mdi                   18:12.16   19
 23 William Watson            JR Rockland              18:23.69   22

Class B Boys

Team Title

Defending Champion Greely had a great state meet in 2008, punctuated by a 50 point win over runner-up Cape Elizabeth, which saw all 7 runners finish in the top 25 overall finishers. The Rangers will be looking to make it two in a row in 2009. They have the front runners in seniors Mark McCauley (3rd in 2008 -16:19.22) & Logan Price (6th in 2008- 16:37.13) plus a strong supporting cast that includes junior Sam Johnston (14th in 2008 – 17:25.37), junior Sam Humphries (20th in 2008 – 17:30.10) & junior Conor Regan (25th in 2008 -17:37.62). The Rangers will be tough to beat; they have plenty of experience back and have the comfort of mind that the state meet is on their home course at Twin Brook.

Despite losing their top 2 harriers to graduated 2008 state runner-up Cape Elizabeth returns a strong squad capable of running with the top teams in Class B. Tope returner is sophomore Thomas Bottomley (13th in 2008 -17:17.62 pictured right) who had a fine freshman campaign last year. The Capers will benefit from the return of junior Reid Douty who was injured last fall, Douty should be in the top 3 in 2009. Also back is senior Peter Brigham (36th in 2008 – 17:58.05), senior Bobby Yokabaskas (39th in 2008 – 18:02.66), junior Chris Haller (40th in 2008 – 18:03.58), & junior Sean Thomas (41st in 2008 – 18:05.77).

The Wildcats of York return 6 of their top 7 harriers this fall as they looked primed to make a run at the state title. Led by defending state champion Alex Moser, York has the front runner that most championship teams have. The supporting cast will have to step but has plenty of experience. Others expected to be in the top 7 are Tristen Palhof (28th in 2008 – 17:42.84 Pictured left), senior Dan Herbein (33rd in 2008 – 17:52.75), senior Aaron Waldman (47th in 2008 – 18:13.79), junior Silas Freeman (55th in 2008 – 18:24.53) & senior Josh Herbein (75th in 2008 – 18:55.28).

Falmouth has been one of the most consistent teams over the past decade, and 2009 should be no different. Despite losing 4 of their top 7, the Yachtsmen figure to be in the mix once again in 2009. The team will be very young, led by sophomore Tim Follo (10th in 2008 – 17:08.67). The other two returners are senior Charlie Swerdlow (35th in 2008 – 17:55.49 pictured right) & sophomore Conor McGrory (46th – 18:13.21). Falmouth will need some of their JV runners to step up for them to be in the top 3 teams again but don’t count them out.

Caribou finished 7th a year ago at the state meet, they return a talented squad in 2009, with 4 of their top 7 back. Seniors Tim Freme (37th in 2008 – 17:59.54) & Finn Bonderson (42nd in 2008 - 18:07.56) along with juniors Jake Michuad (65th in 2008 – 18:39.26) & Christian Sleeper (67th in 2008 – 18:40.86) return to lead the Vikings.

The Clippers of Yarmouth are looking for another breakthrough in 2009, they finished 5th in 2008. Back are the top 5 for the Clippers led by junior Ben Nickerson (19th in 2008 – 17:29.98), juniors Andrew George (27th in 2008 – 17:41.14), & Ben Woodbury (29th in 2008 – 17:44.32 pictured left) and senior Sam Woodbury (48th in 2008 – 18:13.81) & fellow classmate Samuel Peterson (60th in 2008 – 18:29.69).







Individual Title

With 7 of the top 10 runners back in 2009, the individual race should be very close. Last year's champion Alex Moser (York - 16:04.73 pictured left) is going to try and repeat the feat in 2009, but he will have his hands full. Expect a strong challenge from Mark McCauley (Greely - 3rd 16:19.22) & Erskine Academy senior Sam Seekins (4th - 16:25.04 pictured right). McCauley will be running on his home course which may give him an edge. Seekins proved this spring on the track he can run with anyone, as he won both the 1600m & 3200m titles. Moser had a tremendous fall in 2008, culminating with a dominating victory at the state meet. These three could wage an epic battle at the front. If they falter look out for Greely's Logan Price (6th - 16:37.13) or Ellsworth's Ben Chapman (8th - 16:52.99) to step up to the challenge.

We should get a good idea of where Moser, McCauley & Price stand as they will race eachother a couple times before the final showdown. They will know eachother's racing styles well before states. They will also have the chance to race at Twin Brook during the year. Seekins will come in the unknown, as he may not race any of the other guys during the regular season. It should be a great battle. Can Moser repeat? or will be one of the Greely runners claiming the title of their home course? or can Seekins take them all down? Stay tuned the 2009 race for the title could be very close.





Others to watch out for

Ryan James (Belfast) 9th in 2008

Tim Follo (Falmouth) 10th in 2008

Gabe Stewart (John Bapst) 12th in 2008

Milesplit Predictions

Team Champion: Greely

Individual Champion: Sam Seekins

Top 20 Returners

 1 Moser, Alex               JR York High School      16:04.73    1
 3 McCauley, Mark            JR Greely High School    16:19.22    3
 4 Seekins, Sam              JR Erskine Academy       16:25.04    4
 6 Price, Logan              JR Greely High School    16:37.13    6
 8 Chapman, Ben              JR Ellsworth             16:52.99    8
 9 James, Ryan               JR Belfast High School   17:08.13    9
10 Follo, Timothy            FR Falmouth              17:08.67   10
12 Stewart, Gabe             FR John Bapst            17:16.01
13 Bottomley, Thomas         FR Cape Elizabeth        17:17.62   12
14 Johnston, Sam             SO Greely High School    17:25.37   13
18 Nelson, Mike              JR Waterville            17:29.95
19 Nickerson, Ben            SO Yarmouth              17:29.98   16
20 Humphries, Sam            SO Greely High School    17:30.10   17
21 O'Donnell, Patrick        JR Medomak Valley        17:34.78   18
23 Eastman, Seth             SO Fryeburg Academy      17:37.09   20
25 Regan, Connor             SO Greely High School    17:37.62   22
27 George, Andrew            SO Yarmouth              17:41.14   24
29 Woodbury, Ben             SO Yarmouth              17:44.32   26
30 Hale, Jeff                SO Waterville            17:47.60
31 Hall, Kenedi              JR Fryeburg Academy      17:49.69   27