GOUVERNEUR — What was good for the Norwood-Norfolk Central cross country teams during undefeated Northern Athletic Conference regular seasons was good at the Section 10 championship meet on the snow-covered course at the Gouverneur Country Club on Thursday.
The boys meet saw the Flyers group together their top five runners in the top 11 finishers as they claimed Class C honors with 38 points followed by Canton with 47 and Potsdam with 68.
The Flyers girls once again followed the lead of sophomore standout Maddie Dinneen, who ran away from the rest of the field to defend her sectional title. N-N then placed its next four runners in the top 14 en route to earning the Class C crown with 31 points followed by Gouverneur with 44 and Potsdam with 47.
“It’s a formula the boys have used all season,” N-N coach Kent Fetter said. “They’ve been running together for a few years now and they don’t really care who places first for us. It all depends on who is having the best run and the rest just stay as close together as they can.”
“Cross country is an individual sport but it’s also a team sport,” Dinneen added. “It’s important to me to support my teammates so that we can go to states as a team.”
In the Class B races, the Malone boys outscored Massena 18-45, while Canton gained the girls title with a 22-34 decision over Malone. Brushton-Moira ran uncontested to the Class D boys crown while there were no complete teams competing in the Class D girls race.
The top seven from the sectional champions advance to the NYSPHSAA meet slated for Nov. 16 at SUNY Plattsburgh, along with the next top five finishers from other teams.
Canton sophomore Nick Lyndaker overtook Malone’s Dylan Perry on the final hill before the homestretch and went on to win his first individual sectional title with a time of 19:19.2. Perry finished second in 19:25.32 and Canton senior Robert Reed was third in 19:27.67.
Following Perry across the line in the Class B race for FA was Watson Chodat, who posted a time of 20:45.31. The Malone duo will be joined at the state meet in Plattsburgh by teammates Dylan Denny (21:00.72), Tye Royal (21:10.99), Zachary Sprague (21:29.19), Ethan Robistow (21:32.08) and Nicholas Oddey (21:32.08).
For Massena, senior John Harvey placed third in the Class B race in 20:55.15. Salmon River, which finished fourth in the Class B standings with 103 points, was paced by sophomore Shakohentehtha Elijah, who ran 13th in 20:34.52.
Sophomore Thomas Hopsicker emerged as the top runner for N-N, placing third in the Class C race in 19:42.2 while senior teammate Layton Colbert, a Parishville-Hopkinton student, led a swarm of Flyers with a seventh-place finish in 19:57.63. Juniors Michael Richards and Clayton Reed ran eighth and ninth respectively with times of 20:08.37 and 20:11.16.
The Potsdam boys were led by the duo of senior Syl Foisy, who set the pace through two-thirds of the race before winding up fifth in Class C with at time of 19:54.93, and junior Skye Crocker, who was sixth in 19:54.93.
Gouverneur’s Cole Siebels also advanced to the state meet after placing fourth in Class C with a time of 19:49.65.
“I really prepared for this,” said Lyndacker, who rose to sectional champion in only his second year of running cross country for Canton. “I got off to a good start. About halfway through, I still felt really good and starting to think that I could win. It’s definitely a big accomplishment for me.”
The race saw Dinneen race to the front off the start and never look back in defending her sectional title with a time of 20:38. She was followed in the Class C race by teammate Sharon Colbert, a freshman at Parishville-Hopkinton, with a time of 22:16.