For the past two weeks, Blair's boys' cross country team has had back-to-back nailbiter races. This week, the contest against The Hill School was decided by the very thinnest of hair's-breadth margins: the sixth man. Cross country is scored by adding up the placements of each team’s top five runners, with the sixth and seventh men able to push back the opposing team’s scorers if they are able. Besides displacing other runners, the sixth man also serves the function of breaking a tie if one results.
This week once again, Isaac Greene '24 took top honors clocking in at a blazing and self-paced 16:43. Co-captain Timmy Xi '22 fought a 18 minute (and change) duel with Hill runner Ginta Harada which Harada ultimately won (18:25), but Timmy secured a valuable third place (18:27) for the team. Hill’s Dunn, Manganello and Reis took 4th, 5th and 6th in the contest, a devastating blow to Blair’s chances.
The Blair Harriers answered decisively though, with Haruki Ono '23 (20:21), co-captain Ben Liu '22 (20:36), Mitya Granchev '25 (20:37) and Owen Granahan '24 (20:42) powering in ahead of Hill’s 5th man, Anders Mortenson and 6th man, Nick Bresi. This had the effect of bringing the score between the two well-matched teams to a 28-28 tie. However, Blair’s 6th man, Owen, beat Hill’s 6th man, thereby securing the victory for the Bucs.
Other Blair finishers were Andrew Hong '25 in 14th place (21:37); Brendan Morris '22 in 20th (23:09); Tony Ni '25 in 21st (23:57); Daniel Zhang '24 in 25th (24:27); Andrew Wang '24 in 26th (24:31), a meandering Tom Li '24 in 28th (25:39); and Ken Ongnithiwat '25 in 33rd (28:49).
"It was a glorious day to be a Blair cross country runner, and the results underscored the nature of cross country as a team endeavor, with every runner from one to seven playing an essential role in the success of the team, and every runner from eight and beyond playing an essential role in our successes in meets yet to come," said Tim Devaney, head boys' cross country coach.
The team will look to ride the momentum as they head into MAPLS on Wednesday, October 27th.