Six runners and six teams will be crowned state champions Saturday at the cross country state championships. Locals will look to have a say in the outcomes of the races when all is said and done at Twin Brook Recreation Area in Cumberland.

The favorite to win the Class A boys’ race is none other than Lewiston’s Osman Doorow, who has been the man to beat in Class A North this season. Doorow won both the KVAC and Class A North regional titles, and was also the top finisher at the Festival of Champions meet four weeks ago.

Doorow will look to hold off Hampden Academy’s Paul Casavant (second at North regionals) as well as the Scarborough trio of Colin Tardiff, Connor Doherty and Andrew Sholl (1-2-3 at South regionals). Those four runners all placed in the top eight at the Festival of Champions.

“He’s favored. I think the key is just to run within himself at the beginning,” Lewiston head coach Kim Wettlaufer said of Doorow. “I know he has some goals. He’d like to certainly run close to 16 (minutes), or faster. And that’s a real challenge on this course. We’ll see what he can do.”

While Doorow will have some challengers in the individual race, Wettlaufer said he’s not sure Scarborough will for the team title. The Red Storm’s top three gives it an edge over all comers.

“I would be surprised if anyone can beat them,” Wettlaufer said. “I’d love to see a Northern Maine team get them, but those top three guys will probably be in the top six, unless somebody stumbles. It would be hard-pressed for anyone to beat Scarborough.”


The Red Storm easily won the South regional title, and will likely get their best challenge from North regional champ Hampden. Bangor and Falmouth are both in the box for high finishes, as is Wettlaufer’s Blue Devils team.

“Our goal would to be to finish in the top six, if that’s possible. It would be nice to get a little closer to Bangor and Hampden,” Wettlaufer said. “We’d be thrilled with that.”

Lewiston looked like a team to beat at the start of the season, but Wettlaufer said his team “kind of petered out a little bit” thanks to the loss of two of its top five runners.

On the flip side, the Mt. Blue girls have done better than they expected at the start of the season. The Cougars won the KVAC championship and took second at the North regionals.

“We’re thrilled with how we did,” Mt. Blue head coach Kelley Cullenberg said. “We didn’t go in with huge expectations.”

Mt. Blue finished behind Brunswick for the North regional title, and the Dragons will look to keep that momentum going heading into Saturday’s state meet. Both Mt. Blue and Brunswick will have their hands full with South regional champ Bonny Eagle and runner-up Scarborough.


Cullenberg said her team has its sights set on a top five or six finish, and the “wheels are turning” in her runners’ heads about qualifying for New Englands.

“What I’ve said to them is ‘dream big and reach for the stars, and don’t let anything stop you and see what the end outcome is,’” Cullenberg said. “There are no pressures, which is great. They’re just going to go in, and have fun.

“We know the colors of their uniforms, and we’re just going to go out there and every person counts, and we’re just going to see what we can do.”

The individual race could be wide open, with North champ Anne Guadalupi of Cony and South runner-up Kialeigh Marston from Bonny Eagle as two of the favorites. Anna Slager, the South champion from Gorham, and Brunswick’s Tessa Cassidy, the North runner-up, should also be near the front at the end.

The wild card in the races could be the course. Wettlaufer called Twin Brook “hillier” than the Belfast course that the North regionals and the Festival of Champions were run on, but he also said it’s not as daunting as the Cony course in Augusta that hosted the KVAC championship.

Cullenberg talked about small stretch of the course that has gained the moniker “the pain cave,” and how her team refrains from calling it that. She brought her team down to the course over Columbus Day weekend to gain some experience in the hopes of competing at the state meet.


Wettlaufer’s team doesn’t have as much experience at Twin Brook, but Doorow does, and Wettlaufer said he’s “ready” for Saturday’s race.

The Class B boys’ race looks to be between North champ Caribou and South champ Freeport for the team title. Caribou ran away with the North title, while Freeport had a somewhat closer test against York in the South.

Freshman Nick Dall from Waterville was the North regional champ, and Yarmouth’s Luke Laverdiere was tops in the South. Gray-New Gloucester’s Ben Garcia finished seventh at the South regional and will llok for a solid finish Saturday.

Waterville easily won the North regional girls’ title, and will look to follow that up with a state title on the back of No. 1 runner Lauren Brown — the North regional individual champion.

Greely (the South champ) and Yarmouth (the South runner-up) will also be in the mix. The Rangers boast the top two finishers in the South regional, Katherine Leggat-Barr and freshman Carolyn Todd, while the Clippers had a duo finish third and fourth in Abigail Hamilton and Anneka Murrin.

Orono swept the boys’ and girls’ Class C North regional titles, and will be favorites to take the state team titles, as well. All seven of the Red Riots’ runners for both the boys and girls qualified for the state individual title.


The Class C boys’ race will have some local flavor at the front. Lisbon’s Nick Harriman won the South regional title, while teammate Jordan Cole was fourth. In between them was the Winthrop tandem of Jacob Hickey and William Vance.

George Stevens Academy’s John Hassett will also be a favorite, after winning the North regional title, as well as Orono’s Tristan Butterfield, the North runner-up.

GSA will be in the mix for the team title, as will Boothbay and possibly Lisbon and Winthrop.

Orono and GSA will be the favorites in the girls’ team race. The Red Riots are led by North regional champ Tia Tardy, who was the highest-finishing Maine girl at the Festival of Champions, and the Nos. 2 and 3 finishers in the North, Hannah Steelman and Kassidy Dill.

Boothbay freshman Faith Blethen will look to battle for the individual title after winning the South regional title, as will St. Dom’s Ella Brown, who was the runner-up,

The Saints will look for a good team finish after taking fourth at the South regionals and placing three runners in the running for the individual crown.

In all, 10 local teams and 46 local runners qualified for the state championships. The day kicks off with the Class A girls’ race at 11 a.m., followed by the boys’ race around 11:35. Class B then takes the course at 12:30 and 1:05 p.m., respectively, and Class C rounds out the day at 2 and 2:35.

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