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Cougar x-c girls put best feet forward
DIXFIELD -- There certainly wasn't any margin for having an off day, so the Dirigo girls' cross country team needed to depend on each other to place their best foot forward every time they stepped on a course. It was the combination of being committed and having to depend on teammates that helped the Lady Cougars remain competitive throughout the season.
Dirigo finished sixth in the Class C state meet on the 3.1 mile course at Belfast with 98 points. Leading the way was Natalie Bolduc, who finished fourth at 20:51.22, 15 seconds behind the third place finisher. The tandem of Jessica Conant and Sabrina Daoud were 22nd and 25th, respectively. While Silvia Lutick and Megan Bradbury finished 45th and third.
"The field was very competitive,"said coach Gunnar Bradbury. ''The margin between what Natalie and what Megan finished was less that three minutes. I did some figuring after and showed the girls that if they had (combined) to run 54 seconds faster, the team would have finished second.''
In cross country, scores of each team's top five runners are counted and scores are reversed. Washburn won with 58, followed by Orono, Waynflete and Merriconeag-Waldorf, 82-84.
"The front pack was pretty close together,"said coach Bradbury, regarding the course that had numerous rolling hills. ''There wasn't much change in elevation, but with the congestion up front, it was difficult to pass.''
There was some bright spots because Conant recorded a personal best in the state meet. In fact, it was the sophomore's fourth personal best recorded, this fall. Daoud was one of the 12 fastest freshmen (Classes A, B and C) in the entire state.
''Seven of the 12 freshmen are in Class C,'' said coach Bradbury. ''That says a lot about the competition coming back. Also, we was the top team from the Mountain Valley Conference to finish in the state meet.''
It was Dirigo who earned the first championship in the River Valley, this fall. The Lady Cougars edged Boothbay by 66-70 points to earn the MVC crown.
Bolduc finished runnerup, seven seconds behind the leader, on the course at the University of Maine at Augusta. A trio of Daoud, Conant and Lutick each placed within the top 20, while Megan Bradbury finished 26th.
The Cougars had five on the team, with Bolduc and Lutick both seniors. Bolduc, Daoud and Bradbury have done double-duty this fall; each are members of the soccer team.