Voorheesville came achingly close to sending its boys and girls cross country teams to the state championships.
Unfortunately for the Blackbirds, Berne-Knox-Westerlo's boys team was one point better than them.
While the Voorheesville girls team cruised to the Class C title at last Friday's Section II Championships at Saratoga Spa State Park, the boys team found itself in a battle with its hilltown neighbors. Though Voorheesville placed two runners in the top five, B-K-W placed five runners in the top 20 to pull out a 46-47 victory over the Blackbirds.
It happens. That's why we run the races, said Voorheesville coach Steve Relyea. "It's not the individual runners that win Sectionals " it's the seven runners that you put on the line."
Voorheesville's seven girls had a strong overall showing to win the school's first title since 2005. Freshman Michelyn Little led the Blackbirds with a fifth-place finish in a time of 19:24.4. Fellow freshman Casey Morrison was eighth in a time of 20:20.7, followed by junior Zoe Edmunds in 11th place with a time of 20:45.2. Sawyer Cresap (12th place, 20:52.4), Grace Giampaglia (14th, 21:00,7), Sarah Madden (17th, 21:13.1) and Carla Planz (23rd, 21:33.7) also finished in the top 25.
"It was an outstanding win," said Relyea. "We got our top seven runners in before any other team got their first five in."
It looked good for Voorhees-ville's boys team, too, when Conor Cashin and Ian Powell were among the first five runners to cross the finish line. Cashin won the individual title with a time of 15:58.0, and Powell placed fourth in a time of 16:41.0.
"That was a nice victory for (Cashin)," said Relyea. "He looked really strong coming in."
The suspense started building after that. B-K-W runners took three of the next four places, and though Voorheesville's Taylor Treadgold and Nathan Bub finished a respective 10th and 11th, B-K-W stayed on the Blackbirds' heels by getting its fourth and fifth runners in the top 20.
When the final points were tallied, B-K-W's tighter pack overcame Voorheesville's strong lead runners to end the Blackbirds' two-year reign as Sectional champions.
"This was a great meet," said Relyea. "I wish I was on the other side (of the boys' standings), but it was a great meet."
Cashin and Powell will join the Voorheesville girls team at Saturday's state championships at Sunken Meadow State Park on Long Island.""