Class B XC State Championship Preview

York senior Cary Drake sent a message to her competitors at the Southern Maine Regional Championship at Twin Brook last Saturday. The defending champion took off from the gun and dared anyone to follow. She was never challenged as she covered the 5k course in a time of 19:09 to win by fifty seconds and win her second consecutive title. On Saturday at the Troy Howard Middle School Drake will look to defend her state title, and more importantly, look to lead the Wildcats to a second consecutive team title. 

Drake who announced last week that she would be attending Northwestern University will be the individual favorite. Earlier this fall at the Maine Festival of Champions she clocked 17:56.67 on the same course. 

Behind Drake look for newcomer Shealyn Brochu of Morse to be in the chase pack. Brochu has split time with the soccer team and the cross-country team this fall, and it has been a very successful adventure for the junior. Brochu currently the seventh-ranked runner in our individual rankings won the KVAC Class B title two weeks ago and was the runner-up at the Southern B Regional last week. She clocked 19:12.85 earlier this season at FOC, and could certainly challenge a sub 19 effort on Saturday.

Leavitt sophomore Haley Marston has come out of nowhere, she didn't run her first until the Festival of Champions and has been getting better with each race. Marston was third in the KVAC Class B race and matched that last weekend with a third in the Southern Regional.  She set a new personal best for 5k with her 20:09.28 effort at Twin Brook which should translate to a time in the low 19's on the much faster Belfast course.

Don't count out Mt Desert Island junior Amelia Vandongen, she won the Northern Maine Regional last week in dominating fashion. Vandongen who has been hampered by an ankle injury for most of the season ran 19:38.39 winning by 1:22 last week. She has experience advantage over both Brochu and Marston.

Other individuals to watch

Lucy Huggett (Freeport)

Molly Kenealy (York)

Rowan Barry (Greely)

Dylan Burmeister (Lincoln Academy)

Abigail Roberts (Lake Region)

Hadley Mahoney (Cape Elizabeth)

Competing Teams

Mt Desert IslandJohn BapstMedomak ValleyOld TownCaribouYorkLincoln AcademyFreeportCape ElizabethGreelyYarmouthMorse

York won its first-ever girls' state cross-country title in school history a year ago. The Wildcats had a strong tune-up at the Southern Maine Regional as they won by ten points. York will count on the low stick from Drake but senior Molly Kenealy who has a knack for stepping it up in the championship meets will be important in their title hopes too. The difference makers for York might be a pair of sophomores Madelyn Hutchins and Karianna Hultstrom. Look for Lincoln Academy who was second in the Southern Regional to push the Wildcats. The Eagles have a strong trio of Dylan Burmeister, Audrey Hufnagel, and Madeline Kallin. Freeport is in the mix after a third at the Southern Regional, while Northern Champion Mt Desert Island will look to challenge as well.