VTHSXC.COM Vermont HS Boys Cross Country Poll Results - Oct. 17, 2022
Boys Overall Top 10
Sinatra, Jay Z, and many of the greats have rhapsodized about New York. Can we add legendary St Jay coach Chip Langmaid to that list? His #1 Hilltoppers have traveled to the Empire State both of the last two weekends and come back with some fast times and trophies. Last Saturday saw them win their race at the Burnt Hills Invite in Saratoga Springs with 5 runners under 17:00 minutes and a very good 1-5 spread of 54 seconds. They continue to look like the team to beat statewide. #2 CVU cruised to an untroubled win at NVAC’s, with top dog Matt Servin strolling to the win by almost a full minute. #3 Essex has been consistent and consistently improving all season. The Hornets, led by Luke Milkus’s monster 15:45 (16:00 converted to full 5k), also ran well in Saratoga and finished a strong 2nd behind St. Jay. The D1 State Championship looks to be a three-way race with St. Jay, CVU, and Essex being the projected order. But States and Thetford always throw up surprises. The dramatic in-season improvement by Milkus means that Servin may yet have company on the hills of Thetford.
#4 U32 has struggled to field a consistent lineup week to week which has seen them fall in the coaches’ voting. Meanwhile #5 SB holds their spot for what seems like the 7th straight week and #6 BFA moves up on the back of some fine running of their own in Saratoga. In further evidence of the odd nature of polls, #7 MHS slips a spot without racing a step. Nevertheless look for the Solons to be in the mix for a trip to New England’s behind the front running of Avery Smart. With Merrill-Tripplet and Rivera close behind, Montpelier will be looking for a first DII State Championship since 2015. #8 Burlington has a low stick of their own in Avi Yagoda, and #9 MMU and #10 Middelbury have shown the ability to group their top 5 all within a minute. If they can do that at States, this gives them a chance to upset the plans of the higher ranked teams. Speaking of upsets, Craftsbury, unranked but appearing as high as #6 on some coaches’ ballots, remains the class of DIII and a real contender to make New Englands. One of several teams hit hard by early season illness and injuries, the Chargers remain a threat, especially if Senior Cormac Leahy is able to race by season’s end. Leahy, even coming back from injury, is a three-year standout on foot and skis and a threat anytime he pins on a number.
Servin remains the odds-on favorite to win the individual race but the rapid improvement of the talented Milkus may yet make the overall and DI individual race a closer affair than expected. In DII look for Smart to dust the field. The DIII race is likely to come down to a north country battle between Kehler and/or one of his CA teammates against John Viens from Richford. If victorious, Viens would be the first Richford athlete since the great Elle Purrier (now Olympian and National Record holder) to bring home the winner’s medal.
VTHSXC.COM Vermont HS Girls Cross Country Poll Results - Oct. 17, 2022
Girls Overall Top 10
We find this week’s power rankings mostly unchanged. The coaches did give the #2 nod to Essex over a tie with U-32 last week. CVU maintains its spot atop the rankings as it has for every issue of this report. Since the first week of the season, CVU has been the clear #1. To give an idea of how dominant the ladies from Hinesburg have been, at the NVAC meet this past weekend, they put 7 runners in front of Essex’s first. Admittedly, the Hornet’s top runner was competing at Burnt Hills, but the point is made. The only question that remains for the Redhawks, is how good they are relative to the best in New England.
As CVU keeps doing what they do, Essex sneaks into the #2 spot alone despite a loss to MMU at NVACs. The coaches were wiley enough to notice that Scarlet Stimson was not present and was showing off at the uber competitive Burnt Hills meet. Throw Stimson in and the Hornets take MMU on the day. U-32 stays strong at #3 as they have impressed in the past few weeks. MMU’s top two of Drury and McEntee are top tier and enough to put MMU in 4th in the eyes of the coaches.
The remainder of the top 10 will be battling to earn one of the six passes to the New England meet in November.
The individual race is getting a bit more clear as we have more data points. It looks to be a four person race for the best in Vermont with MMU’s Tess Drury, CVU’s Alice Kredell and Estella Laird and Essex’s Scarlet Stimson. Drury has had the edge on the field the past two head-to-heads taking Woods Trail and NVAC’s while Kredell one at the Essex Invitational. Interesting things can happen on the trails of Thetford on the biggest state in Vermont cross country. We don’t know who will come out on top, but it is shaping up to be one heck of a race. Given CVU’s team dominance, this will be the most interesting battle of the day in the Division 1 race.