Aldrich leads Staples Cross Country to strong showing at XC Open

The Staples High School cross country team competed in the state open meet at Wickham Park on Friday. The boys qualified as a team, and senior Ingrid Johnson ‘11 competed in the girls race. The boys team finished 17th with 361 points.

Senior captain Ben Aldrich ‘11 finished first for the Wreckers with a time of 16:41. Aldrich placed 22nd overall and made the all-state team. “Becoming all-state was not exactly something that I had planned on, It was always more a dream than it was a goal. However, as the season progressed, I realized that it was something I could do especially after the FCIAC and state class meets, “Aldrich said. Also running for Staples was sophomore Henry Wynne ‘13 (17:25), senior captain Jeff Caffrey ‘11 (17:57), Patrick Nolan ‘13 (18:03), Mikolaj Kulis ‘12 (18:14), and captain Jack Roche ‘11 (18:33).

During the race, Wynne was running with the captain and accidentally spiked Roche from behind. This injury prevented Roche from competing to the best of his ability, however did not deter him from finishing the race. Roche had seven stitches put into place and will be ready to train for indoor track in two weeks.

As forJohnson, she placed 79th with a time of 20:49. “I was pleased with my performance. Although my time was not faster than last years, I was happy to have competed in Opens. It was a nice end to the season,” Johnson said.

Although neither the boys team or Johnson will be competing in New Englands, Aldrich’s solo performance was enough to qualify him for Saturday’s meet. Connecticut is one of the most competitive states in New England according to Aldrich. Therefore many of his competitors will be people he has already raced against. “I am very excited for the New England meet. The level of competition will be incredibly high, and I’m hoping that I can have the best race possible.”