Many schools skipped last week's invitationals and opened up this weekend. Pomperaug girls, the #2 team in Connecticut according to the CT Cross Country Poll, showed they are a contender for the State Open title by defeating John Jay of New York 37-39 in the small school race.
The Panthers were led by freshman Kate Wiser, who finished 2nd in 15:04 for 4000m. Wiser is the latest in a long time of state champions from the Nutmeg Striders middle school program. She was backed up by fellow Strider alums Maddie Villa in 8th and Ivy Walker in 12th. Completing the scoring for Pomperaug were senior Ashley Wargo in 15th and junior Katie Schenk in 18th.
Defending State Open champion Morgan McCormick of Wilton has returned to form after being forced to sit out the championship races during spring track due to a hip injury and low iron. The senior changed her strategy by going out faster and taking the lead earlier in the race than she is accustomed to. This paid off in a big way as McCormick ran 38 seconds faster than last year crossing the line in 14:32.
Amity boys had a mild upset over Fairfield Prep who defeated them in a dual meet on Tuesday. The Spartans went 4-5-6 with Andrew Burford, Connor Visnic and Jake Mattei all finishing between 16:39-40 for the 5000m course. Taking 16th overall was Spencer Paragas in 17:14 with Ian Carpenter taking 35th in 18:01.
Fairfield Prep lost their advantage when their #3 runner, McKinnon Sheldon, who was forced to drop out because of an old hip injury that has plagued the senior on and off.
The Jesuits didn't come home empty handed though. Senior Drew Thompson ran 15:42 and won by 26 seconds over Shelton's Robert Dillon. Only Spenser Brown, Eric van der Els and Kyle Beaudette have run faster since they moved the course to 5k in 2009. The Footlocker Finalist is looking to take his coaches Bob Ford Sr. and Jr. to their 7th trip to the national championship in the past 19 years.
Watch Morgan McCormick's interview here
Watch Drew Thompson's interview here