(Updated on 9/30)
From week 1 at the Big Red to week 3 at the Big Purple, the Dobbs Ferry Eagles have been letting their true colors show with some truly golden performances. On Saturday, September 27, at the Warwick Wave Invite, the Eagle varsity boys once again showed that a Class C team could run with the big boys in a race that included some of the top teams in Section 1 along with the best team in the Northeast region that is ranked #3 nationally. Overall the boys and girls bagged 11 medals and a round of post-race ice creams from a mildly happy Coach JP Kaminski.
Warwick's Big Purple invitation was run on a moist day laden with mist so thick that seeing a line of runners 50 yards away was a challenge. The fog could not hide another outstanding showing by a Dobbs boys team that looks intent on keeping its top 10 rating among all Section 1 teams, from big and bigger. Entering the meet ranked #6 in Section 1, the boys finished 6th in the Varsity 1 race, just 1 place and an average of 1 second behind Mahopac, a Class AA team ranked #4 in Section 1. With 128 points, Dobbs was also only 16 points behind the 3rd place team, Red Hook. Suffern won the race over the host school Warwick, and Don Bosco took the first 3 places in the Varsity 2 race and was the best team at the meet overall.
Top Eagles Pat and Brendan Wortner broke 17:00, and the senior pack of Evan Fallor, Pat Newman, and Viktor Mashalov pulled in sophomore George Epstein for a great team Speed Rating. The results will keep the Eagles in the thick of the sectional rankings and should insure them a jump to near the top of the New York State Class C rankings as they far outdistanced Rhinebeck, the team ranked 6th in NYS-C.
The girls had a good but less showy day at the Big Purple as their young team split up into the freshman, JV, and varsity races and did not finish the required 5 runners in the varsity race to earn a score. Lead runner Sarah King led an Eagle medal assault in the freshman race, while senior Izzy Natale just missed a medal as she guided a pack of Eagle 8th graders in the varsity race.
Race highlights for the boys included:
- Pat Wortner broke through the 170 Speed Rating barrier and dove down deep below the 17:00 5K level with a 16:20 time and fought off Mahopac's lead runner Joe Abd El Latiff for 5th in the race and 9th overall in the merged results. Pat finished one place ahead of the 4th runner from the Northeast region's superpower, Don Bosco, and less than 3 seconds behind Scarsdale's Ilkyu Lee, who is rated as one of the top runners in Westchester along with Iona Prep's Sean Halpin and Yorktown's Manu Kumar. At this point, Pat is in the top 5 for the county.
- Brendan Wortner continued his awesome freshman year as he also broke the 17:00 minute limit with a 16:43 time good for 13th place and a 162 Speed Rating. The SR could push him ahead of the current top freshman NY Class C runner, Tim McGowan of Dansville. Brendan knocked 74 seconds off his 2007 time. His SR was also 4 points ahead of fellow freshman Dayton Flannery of Bronxville at the Dewitt Clinton Invite at VCP on Saturday.
- Evan Fallor once again used the strategy of charging through the field in the 2nd half of the race to place 35th in 17:33 and improve by almost a minute from 2007 and get a nice SR jump to 146.
- Pat Newman took 38th with a time of 17:37 that shaved 72 seconds off his 2007 time and pushed him up to a 145 SR.
- Viktor Mashalov had a flair for the dramatic as he beat out a runner from Pope John XXIII for the 40th and last medal place. His 17:42 earned him an SR of 143.
- George Epstein provided the final varsity highlight by breaking not only the 20:00 but also the 19:00 barrier to place 59th in 18:28 and a 128 SR. George's time chopped 104 seconds off his 2007 time.
- In the JV race, captain Boris Opacic led a group of three Eagles around the course and picked up a medal with a 23rd place in 19:11, shedding 209 seconds from 2007. Taka Masuda joined him in the medal taking with a 19:20 good for 27th and a loss of 35 seconds from last year. Quinn Wright went below 23:00 with a 22:54 for an 81st that tossed away 87 seconds from 2007.
- The Eagles' middle-school pack in the freshman race was led around the 1.5 mile course by Ryan Malpass who ran an 8:12 to finish 13th and pick up a medal. Hunter Bock and Yusuf Kapadia finished close together in 80th and 84th in 9:26 and 9:32, and Keith Hickey finished up in 135th in 12:18.
The girls' highlights included:
- In the varsity race, Izzy Natale just missed a medal as she crossed the line 41st in 21:54, cutting 66 seconds off of 2007 and getting a 62 SR.
- Rebecca Wiersma drove home 47th in 22:09, knocking 90 seconds off her JV medal-winning time from last year for an SR of 57.
- Chloe Wang finished 57th in 22:44, losing 157 seconds from 2007 for an SR of 45.
- Clara Winder came in 59th in 22:49, nipping 88 seconds off her 2007 varsity time for an SR of 43.
- Mara Spitz bravely ran the JV race as the lone Eagle and finished in 39:53, as her teammates cheered her into a final sprint that left Middletown's Emily Genender seconds behind.
- Sarah King opted for the freshman race and won a 4th place medal with a 9:11 behind a record-obliterating time of 8:00 by Valley Central's 7th grade wonder, Holly Cavalluzzo. The Eagles got a team score and two more medals as Suzanna Halatyn finished 24th in 10:31, Sofia Maluf came in 27th in 10:43, Kim Anker finished 44th in 11:41, and Yuriko Masuda placed 54th in 12:38.
The Eagles discover that the latest results have them ranked #4 in the New York State Class C rankings as they continue to build toward the County and Sectional Championships. The team next faces off with Bronxville in a dual meet on Thursday, October 2, and then travels to Sunken Meadows Park on Long Island for the big St. Anthony's Invitational.