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Doherty, Benson lead locals in opening cross-country races


Donahue and Brooks lead the way for Kingswood in Wolfeboro, North Conway



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HANNAH BENSON rounds a corner on her way toward a fifth place finish in Saturday’s New Hampshire Coaches Series race at Whitaker Woods in North Conway. Joshua Spaulding. (click for larger version)
January 11, 2010
NORTH CONWAY — It was a busy week for the Kennett and Kingswood cross-country ski teams, as both squads had races on their respective home courses with the other team in attendance.

The Eagles and Knights were part of a huge contingent of skiers that descended on Whitaker Woods in North Conway on Saturday, Jan. 9, for the first New Hampshire Coaches Series race, which was hosted by the Mt. Washington Valley Ski Touring and Snowshoe Foundation. The race was a classical race.

The day featured racers from the many different schools and teams across the state and saw two A races in the morning, followed by a junior high race for boys and girls and two B races in the afternoon.

The boys went off first and Kennett freshman Sean Doherty showed that he will be a force to be reckoned with this season. He finished sixth overall in a time of 13:28 and of the five people in front of him, only two, Keene's Sam Reed and Souhegan's Nick Murphy, race for public schools.

Drew Bormann was the next Eagle. He placed 61st overall in a time of 16:16. Torin Laliberte was 69th in 16:43, while Hennie Sullivan raced to 70th place in a time of 16:45. Austin Bernier was just two seconds behind, placing 72nd in 16:47.

Duncan Cromwell was the next Eagle racer, as he placed 109th overall in a time of 18:10. Robert Schrader was 126th in 19:09. Liam Fortin finished 128th in 19:23 and Peter Grzesik finished in 137th place in 20:10 to round out the field for the Eagle boys.

The Kingswood boys were paced by Ben Donahue, who finished 79th overall in a time of 17:03. Chris Brooks was close behind in 81st place in a time of 17:09.

Alex Fernald raced to 99th place in a time of 17:49, while Matt Lounsbury finished 108th overall in a time of 18:09. Austin Beveridge rounded out the Knights in the A race with his time of 20:04, which placed him in 135th place.

The girls' A race followed and once again, a Kennett freshman made a mark, as Hannah Benson raced to a fifth place finish in a time of 15:51, with only one public school racer, Hanover's Emily Nice, in the top four.

Breezy Clausen was second for the Eagles, coming home in 116th place in a time of 22:59, while Molly Shannon raced to 120th place in 23:30. Lindsey Garland rounded out the Eagle skiers with her 133rd place finish in 24:34.

For Kingswood, Caitlyn Brooks was the top girl in the A race, finishing 65th overall in 20:20. Haley Heinrich was 95th overall in a time of 21:45, with Hanne Heinrich finishing 124th in 23:43 and Kelsey Trites crossing the line in 24:02 for 128th place.

Kingswood had two girls in the B race. Hanna Zdrnja finished 85th overall in a time of 28:48 and Amanda Langer was 88th in 29:56.

Kingswood also entered three boys in the B race, with Tyler Tozier taking 48th place in 21:55, Thomas Darling finishing 64th in 24:43 and Richard Lamere taking 72nd place in 28:47.

In the junior high race, Bartlett's PJ Benson was the top local finisher, taking second overall for the boys in 17:19. Teammate Donovan Spaulding was 10th in 19:49, followed by fellow Bartlett student Malcolm Badger in 12th place in 20:29.

Kingswood's Sam Coache was 32nd in 25:11, while Ian Lubkin of Bartlett was 35th in 26:15. Tim Avery of Bartlett rounded out the local boys in the junior high race with a 40th place finish in 29:01.

For the girls, Kingswood's Zoe Rafalowski-Houseman took third place in a time of 18:57, with teammate Micaela Flagg in sixth place in a time of 20:14. Lizzy Duffy of Bartlett was 10th in 21:22, with teammate Amber Dindorf in 18th place in 23:47.

Kingswood's Christine Chrysafidis was 19th in 23:51, just ahead of teammate Julia St. Germain, who was 20th in 23:52. Bartlett's Gigi Miller was 24th in 24:27 and Kennett's Caleen McCarthy finished 26th in 24:35. Morgan Marston of Kingswood was 38th in 28:17 and Mae Van Rossum of Bartlett was 48th in 32:02.

The two teams also skied at Abenaki Ski Area in Wolfeboro in the falling snow on Tuesday, Jan. 5. The meet was the first of the season for the Kennett kids, the second of the year for Kingswood.

The Hanover girls and Inter-Lakes boys were the winners on the day, but the local teams put in strong performances.

The boys went out first and Doherty was the top finisher, crossing the line in a time of 17:39, besting his closest competitor by 40 seconds.

Bormann finished second for the Eagles in 18th place overall in a time of 21:04, followed by Bernier in 19th place in 21:08. Laliberte finished 24th in 22:11 and Sullivan came home 27th in 22:39.

Cromwell raced to 39th place in 24:25, while Grzesik was 45th in 24:49 and Schrader was 46th in 24:53. Fortin rounded out the Eagle skiers in 54th place in 26:11.

For Kingswood, Donahue was the top skier, racing to 28th place overall in a time of 22:43. Brooks was 30th overall and second among the Knights in a time of 23:32, while Fernald finished 32nd in 23:39. Lounsbury rounded out the scoring for Kingswood with his 50th place finish in a time of 25:04. Beveridge was 57th in 27:01 and Darling was 75th in 35:53.

For the girls, Kennett was limited to just two girls. Benson was second overall in a time of 21:09, while Garland finished 54th in 33:07.

The Knights were also limited to only two of the normal top four due to illness, but still were able to race four girls.

Brooks was the top girls for the Knights, placing 24th overall in 26:33. Hanne Heinrich raced to 47th place in a time of 30:42, with Langer coming in 65th in 36:05 and Zdrnja rounding out the Knight field in 69th place in 38:55.

The Abenaki Classic Invitational also featured a junior high race, which Rafalowski-Houseman took home the win in, crossing the line in 24:46. Flagg was second in 25:41, followed by Chrysafidis in 29:47 and St. Germain in 31:10 to complete a Kingswood sweep of the top four spots. Marston was seventh overall in 35:07.

Kennett's Michaela Stanton raced to ninth in a time of 39:06.

Both the Eagles and the Knights will be in action again on Wednesday, Jan. 20, when they travel to Plymouth for a 2 p.m. meet hosted by the Bobcats.

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