Week 2 XC Rankings - Week of 10/12/20
VTHSXC.COM Vermont HS Cross Country Poll Results -Oct. 12, 2020
Boys Overall Top 10
#1U32 and #2 CVU hold onto the top seeds for a second straight week but the rest of the field made up significant ground on the top two teams. The Raiders won two meets relying on their depth. While the Redhawks won their home race against the best of the Champlain Valley. The big mover in the rankings was the #3Essex Hornets who, absent best in the state Maritus, made a big jump and nearly finished second in the CVU race. This huge improvement by their 2-5 runners saw Essex jump over #4BHS, #5BFA/St Jay in the rankings.. The voters were divided on #5St Jay as some voters placed them as high as third in their polls based on their very strong run vs #1 U32 at Danville. The Hilltoppers showed that U32 is beatable and almost pulled the upset on Saturday, narrowly falling to the, for now, #1team in the state.
While the top half of the rankings saw things become much more competitive this week the next five spots are also too closely bunched to call. #7SB and #8MMU barely held on ahead of a triumvirate of D2 Teams (Harwood, Spaulding and Woodstock) who all tied for the #10 spot. Truth is, without the usual big Invites (Manchester, Woods Trail) to sort out the rankings, we might not be able to discern much until the end of the season. The rumor of a Vermont Meet of Champions in lieu of New England’s (cancelled this year) might be the best and final word on who are the best teams and individuals in Vermont in 2020.
Division 1 Boys Top 5
CVU continues to stay at #1 while missing it’s #2 runner. Nye wins their first home meet of the season and is backed up but some very strong pack running all the way through their 9th runner. Servin is expected to return this week putting the Red Hawks back to full strength. The biggest change is Essex jumping to the #2 spot. The Hornets nearly got 2nd place over all the other top Chittenden County teams without the state's top runner. Martisus competed via invitation to a different meet where he ran a 15:10 on the track! Essex’s 2-5 have stepped up and seem like they could be the biggest challenger to CVU. BHS have a very strong 1-3 and will need help from the 4-5 runners to challenge Essex. BFA is right there with BHS with Mashtere consistently getting the low finishes for them. SB and St Jay also received votes in the top 5. On a strong day look for SB to mix it up with BHS and BFA. St Jay is the tough one to rank since they haven’t competed with the other D1 powers and voters can only go by time.
It appears the Martisus would be considered the favorite with another phenomenal performance. Thornton-Sherman has never backed down from a challenge and is the closest challenger. Nye and Mashtere make up the chase pack. Cilwick of NC put up a strong performance at the Harwood invite as well.
Division 2 Boys Top 5
The #1U32 Raiders hold onto the top spot for the second straight week. While winning both their races last week the Raiders showed that they are far from assured a victory at States on Halloween. #2Spualding has three runners who can push the Raiders and they find themselves sharing the #2 seed with both Harwood and Woodstock. The Highlanders were vastly improved in their second race of the season and won their home invite over the notorious hills of Duxbury. #5 MIDD has an intriguing team packed with uber fit Nordic Skiers who should have the motors to run at the front of D2. Don’t be too surprised to see the TIgers at the front when the races count most. While the rest of the division has ample potential, and U32 lacks a clear low stick, the Raiders have a pack and depth that means they remain the team to beat for the moment.
Division 3 Boys Top 5
D3 is slowly starting to compete more and more, but the top of the leaderboard is still largely unknown. Right now, Craftsbury has 4 of the top 7 fastest athletes. With only the top 4 runners scoring in D3, this means the division would be a run away for Craftsbury.
This scenario, however, is helped by the fact that Craftsbury’s 3 biggest competitors from last season, Peoples, Stowe, and Thetford, have yet to post race results this season. Until they are able to race, the division will largely be an unkown.
Craftsbury is a young squad, with 4 sophomores running the team’s best times. They are led by Cormac Leahy, who’s race from last week is still the fastest in the division by a minute (17:37).
VTHSXC.COM Vermont HS Cross Country Poll Results - Oct 12, 2020
Girls Overall Top 10
No major changes in the girls overall rankings. CVU stays on top while finishing a bit short handed. The top three runners appear to be too much for any other team in VT to handle. Harwood and U32 hold down the #2 and #3 spots. Both winners of the meets they attended. The next stretch of teams finished in that same order (almost) at the CVU 3 mile race. Five of the D1 girls teams will do battle again today a t the CVU 2 mile race. St Jay looks to be capable of knocking many of the teams down as well. B&B and MMU round out the top ten but with only smaller meets it’s very difficult to judge where some teams fall. The only time we will get some level of clarity is a state meet with everyone competing on the same course on the same day.
Thurston is still the odds on favorite but Broadley appears to be in striking distance. Veronneau, Stimson, Preston, Hemond, Nails, Larson and Bloom are also following close.
Division 1 Girls Top 5
No changes in the girls D1 rankings. CVU maintains it’s #1 position with strong front running. They did this without one of its stronger runners as well. Nails stepped up to lead the Red Hawks with a 2nd place finish. BFA again proves it’s the deepest team in D1 with a 30s gap between its 2-6 runners. Essex had a very strong day coming very close to BFA with the power duo of Preston and Stimson (finishing 1st and 3rd). SB remains in the 4th spot despite getting edged out by BHS, but they were without one of its top runners at the finish line. BHS holds strong at 5th ready to strike at any of the top teams that look vulnerable. Always keep an eye out for St Jay as they’ve yet to race the other D1 school. It may not happen until the state meet.
The individual battle is where the D1 girls fireworks happened this weekend. Preston impressed with a big win over the other D1 favorites. Nails and Stimson followed closely behind. Margulius, Larson and Veroneau rounded out the main chase pack. Hemond of St Jay is also in this group.
Division 2 Girls Top 5
Burr and Burton
What's better than having the best runner in the state, Ava Thurston, as your top runner? Having her younger sister Julia (9th grade) as your number two. Such is the dilemma every other team in D2 faces as they try and figure out how to dethrone the #1 Harwood Highlanders. This task is made even more difficult by Harwood’s strong and tight running team behind the Thurston sisters. #2U32 may have the horses to compete but will need to figure out a way to outpoint Harwood in the 2-5 spots. #3Burr and Burton might yet have something to say about the annual Duxbury v East Montpelier battle but we will need a few more race results from the girls from southern VT.#4 Midd and #5 Lamoille round out the rankings. Lamoille is led by two sport standout Maggie McGee who should feature at the front end of the D2 States race.
Division 3 Girls Top 5
Bellows Falls was the only team in the top 4 not to compete this week, and keep their top spot, as no team was impressive enough to warrant a change. At #2, BFA Fairfax raced twice this week, both times being led by their sophomore Colleen Clark, and both times finishing 2nd as a team behind D2 MVU. There was more substantial action in the middle of the pack, as #4 Hazen and #3 Rice were both in action this week. #3 Rice ran at the Harwood Invite, and finished middle of the pack, enough to put them past #4 Hazen. The 5th spot in our ranking is still up for grabs, with too limited info to put a team into the spot just yet.
Individually, Abigail Broadley’s time from last week still reigns supreme, and most likely will for the entire season, unless she breaks it herself. 2nd for the division is held by Rice senior Emily Bloom, who is no stranger to tough races, and will most likely hold onto the 2nd spot for the season as well.