Next stop: Junior Olympic Nationals

Next stop: Junior Olympic Nationals

Cumberland’s Kiley DeFusco is all by herself as she gets ready to win the girls’ ages 11-12 division race at Sunday’s USATF Region 1 championship meet on Sunday at Sunken Meadow State Park in Long Island, N.Y. DeFusco, who earlier this month, captured the state middle school cross country championship, topped a field of 120 runners by winning the 1.86-mile race in a time of 10:41.

NEW YORK – Several young cross country runners from Cumberland and Lincoln will get their opportunity to test their mettle against some of the elite harriers in the country at the USATF National Junior Olympic Cross Country Championships.

Running in the Region 1 championship meet on Sunday at Sunken Meadow State Park in Long Island, N.Y., the North Cumberland Surge’s and Sentinel Striders’ running clubs saw their share of runners qualify for the national meet by turning in some exceptional performances.

And for the second straight meet, Cumberland’s Kiley DeFusco of the Striders convincingly won the girls’ 11-12 race by topping a field of 120 runners on the 1.86-mile course in a time of 10:41.

Not only was DeFusco’s time seven seconds faster than her winning time in the previous week’s New England meet at Deerfield Park, but she also topped the runner-up finisher by 17 seconds.

The Surge, meanwhile, saw their girls’ ages 11-12 and boys’ 13-14 teams make the grade for the national meet. The girls’ squad placed third in its race with 93 points, and the boys took fourth place in its 2.46-mile event with 110.

The girls’ team was led by Charli McCue, who placed ninth in a time of 11:16, and Lucy Biggs, who took 15th in 11:25. Rounding out the Surge’s top five finishers were Emily Bourke (39th, 12:05), Samantha Jacinto (53rd, 12:25), and Leanna Parrilo (61st, 12:32).

For the boys, Cole McCue’s 12th-place finish of 13:28 and Phil Simas’ 15th place of 13:34 keyed the Surge, and also claiming spots among the top 65 were Anderson Jacinto (22nd, 13:45), Ryan Bourke (45th, 14:40), Nolan Rogalski (61st, 15:18), and Ben Roderick (63rd, 15:21).

Individually, solid top-10 performances came from the Surge’s Sam Henderson, who took third place in the boys’ 11-12 race in 10:22, the Surge’s Grace Carr, who placed seventh in the girls’ 15-18’s 3.1-mile race in 20:34, and Cumberland’s Cooper Magill of the Striders, who was eighth in the boys’ 8-under’s 2,000-meter race in 8:29.

Also qualifying for the national meet were the Surge’s Rose Tuomisto (17th place, girls’ 13-14 race, 15:26), Cumberland’s Will Souza of the Striders (18th, boys’ 9-10’s 1.86-mile race, 12:01), and Lincoln’s Malia Miller (18th, girls’ 8-under race, 12:47) and Marcus Miller (28th, boys’ 11-12 race, 11:02) of the Striders.

Top 50 places were also registered by the Surge’s Blake Huard (40th place, 11:16) and Benjamin Goodrich (45th, 11:20) in the boys’ 11-12 event, and Lincoln’s Maxton Miller (49th, 9:52) of the Striders in the boys’ 8-under race.

The national meet will be held on Saturday, Dec. 14, at the Yahara Hills Golf Course in Madison, Wisc.

The North Cumberland Surge’s girls’ 11-12 team of, from left, Samantha Jacinto, Emily Bourke, Charli McCue, Leanna Parrillo, and Lucy Biggs, earned a berth in the nationals by placing third in its age division at Sunday’s USATF Region 1 championship meet in Long Island, N.Y.
The North Cumberland Surge’s boys’ 13-14 squad of, from left, Nolan Rogalski, Aiden Neary, Phil Simas, Cole McCue, Ryan Bourke, Anderson Jacinto, Sam Kucal, and Owen Dennen, will be heading to the national meet in Wisconsin in two weeks, thanks to the boys’ fourth-place finish at Sunday’s Region 1 championship meet. Ben Roderick is also a member of the team.