20 Aug 2014
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Suffield Middle School Boys Win Cross Country Championships

Suffield Middle School Boys won the State Cross Country Championships Saturday afternoon with the Suffield Girls placing second.

Suffield Middle School Boys Win Cross Country Championships

It was a crisp and sunny Fall day for the Connecticut State Cross Country Championships at Wickham Park in Manchester.

Suffield Middle School runners kept warm and drank in the sunshine before hitting the start lines for the A class and B class races.

The Boys placed first and Suffield Girls grabbed second overall. 

More than 3,000 athletes from around the state were registered and 49 boys teams and 41 girls teams from various schools.

"We win because we work hard, they are motivated, they love to run, they have great sportsmanship, great support from parents and they know I care about them," said Suffield Coach Linda Begley.

Running for the Suffield A team: Jeremy Walch, Thomas Durkin, Austin Rupp, Ty Vinick, Christian Mercadante, Matthew Sweeney, Jason Werenski.

Casey Caplan, Katie Baker, Gracie Cloyd, Caitie Kirshbaum, Caitlin Costello, Julia Mandirola and Emily Bernabe ran for the Suffield A team. 

The rest of the 126 runners on the team ran in each of the girls and boys B race, with many collecting medals for finishing in the top 50.

According to Begley, since 2005, the girls have either won the state or come in second and the boys have done the same since 2007 (both boys and girls won that year). 

The team held a dessert banquet and awards ceremony last night at the Middle School. Begley thanked her assistant coach, Gosia Baker and said goodbye to the 8th graders. She commended the parents for supporting the runners and assisting with all that goes into the meets.

Thank you for sharing your children with me," she said, adding she was sad to see the season end.

"This," said Baker pointing to the student athletes gathered around her. "This is why it is so easy to come to work."

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