Hawks race to top ten finishes

Woodland’s Emilie Noreika finished 24th at the Class M cross country meet, and the girls finished seventh overall. The boys team also finished seventh. –FILE PHOTO

MANCHESTER — The Woodland cross country teams wrapped up the fall season by finishing near the top of the NVL and their state division.

The boys and girls teams both finished seventh at the Class M state meet Saturday at Wickham Park in Manchester.

The two teams combined to lose only one race during the regular season, and had strong times at the NVL meet. The boys team finished second at the conference meet in Watertown on Oct. 18 behind Kennedy. The girls took third behind first-place Derby and runner-up Watertown.

The Hawks took home their share of league honors.

Matt Luxeder earned all-NVL with his fourth-place finish. Greg Aldrich and Kyle Crowell earned all-Iron Division status.

Emma Slavin was an all-NVL recipient after her seventh-place finish. Jaden Young and Jill Brotherton earned all-division for their efforts.

“The teams were a pleasure to coach,” Woodland head coach Jeff Lownds said. “We really ran our best times over our last four races.”

After the NVLs, Woodland put on another impressive showing at the Platt Tech Invitational, which draws schools larger than Woodland. The girls won the invite and the boys finished second.

Luxeder had the top finish for the Hawks at the state meet with 19th place. Crowell (27th) and Aldrich (36th) also had solid days. Wesley Stein, Vincent Costanzo, Charles Schwartz and Tom Bucciferro also competed for Woodland.

The girls team had four runners in the top 50 at states. Woodland was again led by Slavin, who took 20th overall, along with Emilie Noreika (24th), Young (41) and Brotherton (49th). Brooke Iannone, Jessica Fox and Calisa Costanzo also completed the course.

“I’m very pleased with how we ran,” Lownds said. “We had a fantastic season, especially when you consider we only lost one meet between both teams.”