New England Meet Central

Wickham Park in Connecticut, host of a multitude of cross-country meets, will welcome high school runners to its picturesques grounds one last time this season as the site of Saturday's 80th annual New England Championships. This year's meet promises to provide plenty of excitement on the boys' and girls' side.

Nationally-ranked Alex Ostberg of the host state's Darien High, leads a boys' field that includes more than 30 runners that have broken 16 minutes for the five-kilometer distance. Ostberg, a second-place finisher at last year's meet, will attempt to break his sizzling course record of 14:58, set at the CIAC State Open Championship on Oct. 31. La Salle Academy sophomore D.J. Principe, who won the R.I. state meet this past Sunday, ranks No. 2 with his 15:27 clocking back in early September. Principe and the Rams are the defending team champions and look to be the favorite again. La Salle is currently ranked No. 11 on MileSplit's national rankings and was very impressive in its win at the states where it beat perennial power Bishop Hendricken, 25-47. The Rams, Hawks and Connecticut state champion Danbury are considered the top teams that will be toeing the line.

Last year's Foot Locker runner-up Hanna DeBalsi of Staples in Connecticut, is the overwhelming favorite in the girls' race. She breezed to a winning time of 17:59 at the CIAC state meet, more than 40-seconds ahead of her nearest pursuer. DeBlasi, who indicated she is hoping to break her CR of 17:41 on the hilly terrain of Wickham Park, will lead a talented field that features nearly 20 runners that have averaged quicker than six minutes per mile for 5K. Some harriers to keep an eye on are Emma McMillan of Barrington, who captured her third straight R.I. state crown with a fast time of 17:47.87. Also, Oyster River's Maegan Doody, who copped last week's N.H. Meet of Champions with a 17:51.20 effort.  La Salle Academy juniors Eliza Rego (17:38.29) and Karina Tavares (17:59.09) as well as Shannon Murdock of Exeter, N.H. (17:53.27) have also cracked 18 minutes this season. La Salle and defending titlist Coe-Brown of N.H., are expected to be battling for team honors. Both rank high on the national scale and both earned convincing victories at their respective state meets with La Salle winning by 56 points over second-place Barrington and Coe-Brown an easy 85-point victor over runner-up Bishop Guertin. You can't forget Connecticut's Tolland High, too. The Tigers won their state meet by 74 points!



Boys' race - 11:30 a.m.

Girls' race - 12:30 p.m.




Virtual Meet: Boys' teams

Virtual Meet: Girls' teams 

Top NE boys

Top NE girls

Last year's results    Boys   Girls