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Boys' cross country continues dominance, looks to stay undefeated through state meets

Boys Cross Countryby Jacob Gurvis

Boys’ cross country, 11-0, continues to have a largely successful season, according to coach Jim Blackburn.

The Tigers have not lost a meet yet this season, and Blackburn said that the team’s recipe for success is quite simple. “We’ve won all our meets. We have good runners, that’s really it,” he said.

Blackburn said that “it’s all about beating other teams,” and the Tigers have done that successfully and often this season.

Senior Gabe Montague, a captain with seniors Max Brandl, Jared Freedman, and Mike Schlichting, said, “A lot has been going well. We’re the strongest we have been in years, so we are all motivated to make the most of it and train hard so we can do well in the postseason meets.”

Montague attributed much of the team’s success to its determination to succeed.

“The biggest thing that has contributed to our success is strong motivation from the top runners to the JV runners. We are very competitive with each other at all levels on the team, but we also care a huge amount about the team as a whole.,” he said.

According to Montague, there isn’t much that the Tigers can do to improve. “Not a whole lot needs to be changed in the way we’re doing things so far. We just need to make sure to avoid injury and continue to improve at the rate we’ve been going, and we’ll have a good shot at doing well at the Eastern Massachusetts meet and All-States,” he said.

Going into last week, the Tigers were tied with Brookline on top of the league, as both teams were undefeated. The Tigers beat Brookline, securing the top spot

Blackburn said that the highlight of the season so far has been beating Brookline and becoming the best team in the state.

Montague said that the Bay State Conference Championship meet this past weekend was a highlight as well. “The highlight of the season so far has been our recent victory at the League Championships on Saturday. All of our top seven ran personal bests and we were able to beat every other team in the league all at once in one meet, which was pretty cool,” he said.

Blackburn noted Montague and Schlichting as runners who have performed especially well. According to Blackburn, Montague is the best runner in the state.

Montague said he is impressed by Brandl and freshman Fred King.

“Max Brandl has done tremendously well in holding off the Brookline swarm. He’s saved us from losing to them twice and is improving a huge amount. For a while we had no idea who our number five guy would be, but Fred King has stepped up to take the spot now. He’s been doing so well that he’s now faster than any of us were in our sophomore years,” he said.

The Tigers are now preparing for the state and division meets, where they look to continue their success. The main goal, according to Blackburn, is to be the best team in the state.

“We know we’re the best in the league. The question is whether we can we be the best team in the state,” he said.

The Tigers will answer that question in the upcoming weeks when they compete in two upcoming championship meets. The Eastern Massachusetts Division 1 meet will take place Nov. 9 at Wrentham State Park and the All-State meet will be Nov. 16 in Gardner, MA.

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