ELLSWORTH — George Stevens Academy’s girls’ cross-country team began its 2016 title campaign with a third-place showing in the Ellsworth Invitational. A year later, the team’s top runners have helped it start off on an even better note.
GSA’s Eliza Broughton and Mary Richardson finished first and second, respectively, to lead the Eagles to a second-place finish behind Caribou at Saturday’s Ellsworth Invitational. The result topped GSA’s third-place finish in 2016, and the team’s score of 67 marked a 17-point improvement from a year ago.
Broughton’s winning time of 20 minutes, 2.77 seconds was the fifth-best girls’ result in event history. Richardson wasn’t far behind; her 20:08.52 finish was good enough for eighth all time. GSA’s Mary Brenna Catus and Zeya Lorio added to the team’s strong performance with respective times of 22:32.30 (18th) and 22:46.33 (19th).
“Mary [Richardson] and Eliza still find ways to improve all the time,” GSA coach Erich Reed said. “They never stop working to get better, and they’re fantastic athletes and leaders for our team.”
The win marked a strong start to the GSA girls’ championship defense. Last season, fellow state championship contender Orono edged the Eagles for second at the Ellsworth meet. The Red Riots pushed the Eagles once again Saturday, but GSA edged its Class C rival by four points this time.
“Orono always replaces the top runners with other good ones,” Reed said. “It’s going to be fun to go back and forth with them this season.”
The Ellsworth and Mount Desert Island girls’ teams also earned top-half finishes. For the host team, Caitlin MacPherson and Trinity Montigny finished sixth and ninth, respectively. MDI didn’t have a runner finish in the top 10, but Katelyn Osborne (14th), Olivia Johnson (20th), Louise Chaplin (23rd), Emily Banks (24th), Loren Genrich (27th) and Olivia Watson (3rd) all finished in the top half for the Trojans.
“We try to treat these beginning meets as chances for accomplishing team goals and identifying our strengths and weaknesses — trying new things and seeing ways we can improve,” MDI coach Desiree Sirois said. “I felt we definitely did that this weekend. Our returning runners did really well and set the pace from the start, and both our boys’ and girls’ teams did well.”
On the boys’ side, Deer Isle-Stonington’s Brendan Penfold won with a time of 16:40.21. His time was 8.27 seconds ahead of second-place finisher Thorin Smith, who helped lead MDI to a third-place result. The Trojans also received top-20 finishes from Calvin Partin (15th), Sean Murray (18th) and Jon Genrich (20th).
Matt Shea finished with a time of 18:15.34 to finish in 12th place for Ellsworth, and teammate Mark Berry (17th) crossed the finish line in 18:51.44 to join him in the top 20. Ellsworth finished sixth as a team with 140 points, and GSA rounded out the Hancock County teams with a ninth-place result.
Below is a list of the top-10 individual finishers and all team scores for both the boys’ and girls’ events.
- Brendan Penfold, Deer Isle-Stonington, 16 minutes, 40.21 seconds
- Thorin Smith, Mount Desert Island, 16:48.48
- Jonathan Steelman, Orono, 16:48.53
- Dylan Marrero, Caribou, 16:52.19
- Evan Desmond, Caribou, 17:27.37
- Max Bartley, Presque Isle, 17:45.72
- Kyle Boucher, Caribou, 17:46.40
- Joel Bond, Hodgdon, 17:54.80
- Matt Keresey, Orono, 17:55.99
- Ben Spear, John Bapst, 17:58.91
Boys’ team scores
- Caribou, 43
- Orono, 57
- MDI, 82
- Hermon, 129
- John Bapst, 137
- Ellsworth, 140
- Presque Isle, 150
- Sanford, 179
- George Stevens Academy, 226
- Old Town, 231
- Eliza Broughton, GSA, 20:02.77
- Mary Richardson, GSA, 20:08.52
- Camille Kohtala, Orono, 20:43.40
- Madison Jandreau, Presque Isle, 20:58.40
- Ashley Violette, Caribou, 21:06.84
- Caitlin MacPherson, Ellsworth, 21:11.40
- Audree O’Meara, Old Town, 21:13.42
- Isabelle Jackson, Presque Isle, 21:13.65
- Trinity Montigny, Ellsworth, 21:18.73
- Abigail Wimmer, Caribou, 21:32.85
Girls’ team scores
- Caribou, 67
- GSA, 72
- Orono, 76
- MDI, 102
- Ellsworth, 108
- Presque Isle, 132
- Old Town, 175
- John Bapst, 189
- Hermon, 211
- Sanford, 267