The Manchester City Cross Country Championships turned out the way the coaches predicted ahead of time. The Manchester Central girls, behind Emily Harris, easily won and the Manchester Memorial boys, behind Davis Clark and Brett Hoerner, nudged the Little Green by one point for the team title at Derryfield Park Tuesday.
Unofficially, because it entered the meet to get a work-out in, Alvirne of Hudson nudged Memorial 46 to 49. Phil Demers (16:35), a junior runner for the Broncos, also out-kicked Central's Abram Gagnon (16:41) to the finish line for the victory.
Because the coaches agreed Alvirne's point total wouldn't count, Memorial will officially go down as the boys' team winner with a 36 to 37 victory over Central. Gagnon will also be declared the official city meet winner although he acknowledged afterward Demers pushed him from start to finish.
"This was valuable for me," said Gagnon of Hooksett. "Phil was on the same pace I was and he just had a little more in the end."
Demers said Alvirne entered the meet for two reasons. "Derryfield Park is hosting the division meets in a couple of weeks and where we train, we don't have as many hills as this course. It was really beneficial from a team standpoint."
Memorial was able to pull out the win behind Clark (16:51) and Hoerner (16:56), who followed Gagnon to the finish line. Parker Leonard (17:51, ninth) and Joshua Winn (17:57, 10th) were also formidable for Memorial.
Carl Harris (17:39) and Ryan Nordle (17:41) finished seventh and eighth respectively for Central. Ehsun Farooq was the top West runner at 17:28, good for sixth place. Byrne Cronin (17:58) was Trinity's top runner, finishing 11th.
On the girls' side, Harris ran a comfortable race and posted a 20:16 time. Lydia Lyman of Alvirne (20:25), Jennifer Murphy (20:51) of Central, Eireann Kolden (21:24) of Trinity also ran solid times. Central (21 points) topped Trinity (53) and Memorial (56).
"I'm happy the team won," said Harris. "We're starting to peak at the right time."
City Meet Results
Boys' team totals: Memorial 36, Central 37, Trinity 66, West 90
Boys' Individuals: Phil Demers, Alvirne, 16:35: Abram Gagnon, Central, 16:41; Davis Clark, Memorial, 16:51; Brett Hoerner, Memorial, 16:56; Noah Bellomo, Alvirne, 16:57; Ehsun Farooq, West, 17:28; Carl Harris, Central, 17:39; Ryan Nordle, Central, 17:41; Parker Leonard, Memorial, 17:51; Joshua Winn, Memorial, 17:57; Byrne Cronin, Trinity, 17:58; Kendall Westhoff, Alvirne, 18:07; Kyle Saunders, Alvirne, 18:12; Chris Whittle, Central, 18:12; Anthony Cestrone, Alvirne, 18:20
Girls' team totals: Central 21, Trinity 53, Memorial 56
Girls' Individuals: Emily Harris, Central, 20:16; Lydia Lyman, Alvirne, 20:25; Jennifer Murphy, Central, 20:51; Eireann Kolden, Trinity, 21:24; Shaylyn Saunders, Alvirne, 21:33; Jessica Sweetser, 21:34; Rebecca Walker, Central, 21:51; Holly Webster, Central, 21:55; Sam Gauthier, Central, 22:04; Katie Bellomo, Alvirne, 22:14; Megan Nault, Memorial, 22:23; Emily Barry, Alvirne, 22:27; Kearsten Pichette, Central, 22:28; Kelsey Mercurio, Trinity, 22:32; Vanessa Monzon, Memorial, 22:36; Delaney Kimball, Trinity, 22:37