Cross country state meet

Silas Eastman

CUMBERLAND — Although he won the Regionals a week before, Silas Eastman didn’t like the way he ran the third mile at Twin Brooks.

So, he picked up the pace.

Eastman won his second straight Class B state cross-country title in Cumberland by pulling away from Falmouth’s Tim Follo for a convincing win.

The Raider junior ran the 5,000-meter race in 16:14.15, which was faster than his time from a week ago on the same course (16:18.11). Follo ran a personal best at 16:32.20, a drastic improvement from last week’s 16:55.71. Ellsworth sophomore Dan Curts was third at 16:38.43.

“I was at the second mile mark and Follo was right on Silas,” Fryeburg Academy Coach Bill Reilly said. “In the last mile, Silas just drew on his power and crushed Follo.”

Eastman knew he had a tight race on his hands.

“I really didn’t know how close he (Follo) was. I could hear him at the second mile,” he said. “I knew I had to pick it up because last weekend, my third mile was a bit slow. I knew I had to pick it up and try to hold him off.”

There would be no photo finish as Eastman came up over a hill with no other runner in sight. Eastman said running conditions were not much better than a week ago because the Class B race was the day’s final event. Last week, the course was muddy in spots. This week, portions were “torn up.” Eastman said the first 100 meters he wasn’t able to “get any grip” and “it was really tough.”

“Winning my second straight title is just amazing,” Eastman said.

Could he three-peat? Coach Reilly believes the talented Eastman can be even better.

“Silas is still one year short of his full genetic potential, which occurs between the ages of 14 and 18 for boys, yet he is winning against older runners, a rarity in boys’ cross country,” Coach Reilly said. “Next year should be very interesting.”

Meanwhile, FA junior Logan Gerchman placed 43rd in the field of 118 with a time of 18:25.80. He was followed by freshmen Thomas Rose at 18:52.71 (62) and Jonathan Burk at 19:40.19 (84).

Other FA finishers were: 88. Sophomore Eric Hannes at 19:47.83; 92. Freshman Liuke Yang at 20:03.80; 94. Sophomore Tyler O’Keefe at 20:05.72.

Fryeburg placed ninth as a team with 254 points. Falmouth won the team honors out of the field of 16 schools with 64 points, clearly ahead of Greely with 102 points.

Coach Reilly looks for the Raiders to be a major team power next fall with the loss of just one senior, captain David Fulton, “who did a great job leading the team this year,” he said.

Eastman’s next test will be the New England Championships set for Nov. 12 in Rhode Island. There, he will run against three-time Class C champion Matt McClintock, a senior from Madison, who posted the fastest time at Twin Brooks last Saturday at 15:52.

“This is a race that I am sure both are very excited about and each looks forward to testing themselves against a very worthy competitor,” Coach Reilly said, “They both should be at the top of their training fitness for this race.”

Eastman is looking forward to the head-to-head race with McClintock.

“I want to run right with him,” he said.

One tough cookie

Corinn Bedell is one tough cookie.

The Raider senior posted a personal best Saturday with a time of 21:34.86, which placed her 27th out of the field of 103 runners.

What made her final run memorable was Corinn’s determination.

“She had to stop 300 meters from the finish line to throw up for about 30 seconds and then she continued on,” FA Coach Bill Reilly said. “A spectator next to me remarked, ‘That is one tough girl.’”

Raider freshman Elizabeth Grzyb closed out a strong rookie season with a time of 22:09.12, good for 42nd overall. Brittany Bowman, a sophomore from Camden Hills, set the winning pace at 19:12.19.

Please follow and like us: