Team X-C Preview: Take A Look At Our New Top 6 For Girls

At the season-opening Injury Fund X-C Carnival on Sept 2, we had a chance to witness a plethora of great performances on the grounds of Deerfield Park. Several of our top athletes, including our usual suspects, proved they were dedicated to their training this summer based on their efforts. We also got a look at future (& possibly present) stars with the freshmen races showcasing the talent out there.

As promised, we are reposting our top-six rankings (plus the teams in the hunt) for girls after what we witnessed at Injury Fund. Some of our teams remain the same, but there were plenty of changes, too. Of course, there’s never a full-proof way to make preseason predictions. Especially at meets like these, some teams don’t have their complete squads yet. There’s also runners that weren’t going all-out as they were either overcoming injuries or were instructed by their coaches to hold back with bigger meets on the horizon. It happens. Nonetheless, here’s our new rankings.

And this time, we’re sticking to it!

  1. Cumberland -From our previous predictions, the Clippers reamain at the top spot. Junior Kiley DeFusco, a runner we feel will be among our top five at the State Meet, looked very strong in a relaxed 20:03.74 effort. Fellow classmate Rose Tuomisto (second, 20:25.40) and sophomore Charli McCue (fourth, 20:59.51) also broke 21 minutes, while No. 4 runner, senior Ana Kalaful (sixth, 21:08.74), was on the cusp. Add in ninth-grader Anna Bianchi, who was fifth in the Freshman race at 16:37.81 for 4K, a time that equates to a low 21 minutes for the 5K. That’s a strong line-up this early in the season that will only get better.
  2. Moses Brown – Guess we were a little off on the Quakers? Like we said, pre-season predictions are often difficult with multiple variables that can occur. Still, Moses Brown proved to us that it deserves to make this big jump to No. 2 from our original spot as an honorable mention. Competing in the Caswell Race, the Quakers scored just 33 points to take the team title, 40 more than runner-up North Kingstown. MB’s Jay Champlin was third (19:37.02) behind Erin von Housen of Chariho and St. Ray’s Rory Sullivan, our top two runners in the state right now. The Quakers also had Rachel Williams (fifth, 20:38.62), Sophia Clyne (sixth, 20:59.29), Akayla Siddiqi (11th, 22:02.62) and Sophia Mocco (14th, 22:44.28), right there in the mix.
  3. East Greenwich – The defending champions were Roy Race winners at Injury Fund with 40 points, nine more than South Kingstown. The Avengers competed without Ava Peters, who was their No. 4 runner at the State Meet last year. EG demonstrated pack mentality in this meet with Ellie Maybaum, Alica Chen, Anna Huang, Celia Caliri and Brea Wood taking the seventh through 11th spots with times ranging from 20:41 to 22:23.60. Their No. 6, Emily Clarke, was 14th overall in 22:57.
  4. North Kingstown – The Skippers are another team we moved out of our Honorable Mention spot. As we mentioned, the Skippers were second to Moses Brown in the Caswell Race with Abby Nicoopoulos (seventh, 21:14.15) and Clare Carroll (15th, 22:44.28) leading the way. Here’s the primary reason they’re here. A few of its talented underclassmen will be among their varsity squad this fall, at least it seems that way. North Kingstown had three of its ninth-graders – Lucy Stowe (first, 15:49.03), Abbie Tighe (16:18.95) and Maura Whitney (16:30.82) – finish 1-3-4 in the Freshmen 4K .
  5. La Salle Academy – The Rams remain in our fifth spot based on what we saw at Injury Fund. La Salle has a solid 1-2 with Maeve Casey and Mia Bettez, who went 2-3 in the Sullivan Race. There’s also Jayden Donnelly, who was fourth overall. Look out for ninth-grader Alyssa Parenteau. She was second in the Freshmen 4K, clocking 16:04.79. She’ll undoubtedly be one of the Rams’ top three or four runners this season.
  6. South Kingstown – The Rebels are another squad we’re leaving at their original spot. SK had a strong showing in the Roy Race, led by Sophia Caito (third, 20:11.22) and Emma Soffientino (sixth, 20:37.40).

Honorable Mention: Saint Raphael Academy, Portsmouth, Barrington, The Prout School

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