BEAVER FALLS — Beaver River senior Hunter Moore will have some familiar faces greeting him when he starts his collegiate running career.
Moore recently signed a letter of intent with NCAA Division II school Roberts Wesleyan in Rochester. He’ll run with the team’s cross country team starting in the fall and he’ll have former Beavers runner Connor Demo as a teammate once again.
“When I was a freshman, I really bonded with the seniors on the team, like Connor and Erik Campeau,” said Moore, who finished 13th in the 2019 Class D race at the NYSPHSAA championships at SUNY Plattsburgh.
Moore visited the campus as a part of an honors choir, which helped solidify his choice. He said that he didn’t talk to his former teammates before signing his intent letter, but knows he’ll be among friends again. Demo is a junior with the team, while Campeau last competed for the team in 2018.
“I’m sure they’ll be happy to hear that (I’m at Roberts Wesleyan),” said Moore, who placed sixth in the Section 3 Class D race at Vernon-Verona-Sherrill in 2019.
Beaver River head coach Alex Barrett added that Moore should thrive following in the path of his former Beaver River teammates.
“It’ll be a good fit for him to be around people he’s familiar with,” Barrett said.
While Cory Demo and Colton Kempney garnered most of the headlines, Moore played an integral role in the Beavers’ success over the last few seasons. Barrett said that runners like Moore and Conrad Freed helped them become a formidable force against schools of any size.
“Those two guys were the key for us because a Class D school can’t challenge and beat Class A schools without that depth,” Barrett said. “You need a strong fourth and fifth to be able to do well.”
Barrett added that Moore’s role with the Beavers will help him thrive with the Redhawks.
The Beavers’ 2020 fall season was limited due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Beaver River faced only Lewis County-rival South Lewis in Frontier League action, but did run some outside meets.
“We have our (Beaver River) running club. It was super nice that Mr. Barrett was able to get us into some meets,” Moore said.
However, plans sometimes changed rapidly due to coronavirus cases. Barrett often made multiple plans going into some weekends and would schedule backup meets in case one got canceled.
This past season would have been a chance for Beaver River to record its fourth straight Class D state crown, but the pandemic scrapped the state tournament that was slated for Vernon-Verona-Sherrill in November. The Beavers usually feature a big traveling contingent and it would have been louder considering they would have competed in their home section.
“We have a pretty good fan base and they traveled with us to Long Island (in 2018),” Moore said. “It would have been pretty loud because we were in Section 3.”