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Undefeated Red Storm sweep battle of Saranacs

Saranac Lake's Sam Ash (right) and Tucker Jakobe (left) took the top two spots in Saturday's meet against Saranac Central, helping the team to a 20-40 victory. (Provided photo — Rachel Sharples)

CADYVILLE — The Saranac Lake cross country teams swept their meet against Saranac Central on Saturday. Despite competing without their top four runners, who were out of the area participating in a club meet, the Red Storm boys still posted a solid win over the Chiefs to improve to 3-0 with one meet left.

Meanwhile, Saranac Lake’s girls triumphed in a battle of unbeatens, running past Saranac Central by a 25-30 score to also move to 3-0.

The meet took place on a 3.08-mile course at the Cadyville Recreation Park.

The top two for the boys came from Saranac Lake, with Sam Ash and Tucker Jakobe finishing neck-and-neck. Ash won the race in 16 minutes, 55 seconds and 16 minutes, and Jakobe was runner-up two seconds back. Saranac Central’s Molly Denis led the girls with a time of 22 minutes, 34 seconds.

Saranac Lake’s boys took six out of the first eight spots on the way to the win. For the Chiefs, Andrew Woodruff finished third with a time in 17:55 and teammate Joe Johnson was fifth with a 19:42 results. Other top performers for Saranac Lake included Justin Duprey in third (18:28), Aiden Hessletine (20:08), Sam Madden (20:23) and Caleb Shoemaker (20:26).

Coach Bill Peer noted that the Red Storm girls traveled as a pack early on in their meet against Saranac Central this past Saturday. (Provided photo — Rachel Sharples)

The girls race was much closer, with the top seven spots recording times hardly more than a minute apart, with the Red Storm grabbing the second through fourth spots. Megan Wilson of Saranac Lake finished runner-up in 23:04, and was followed by teammates Gwen Mader of Saranac Lake (23:05) and Sabine Denkenberger (23:28). Kaelyn Fay of Saranac Central placed fifth in 23:34, Gillian Miner of the Chiefs was sixth in 23:35, and Bella Wissler of Saranac Lake finished seventh in 23:40.

Red Storm Coach Bill Peer said he was very happy with the team’s performance at the meet, although it was difficult to know the overall score until the results came out because of the staggered start times.

“I thought our girls ran very well early as a pack, and then they started to spread apart,” Peer said. “I thought Tucker and Sam did a nice job to get out for us and run well. But again, it’s a little bit hard until you get the results in front of you because of the three-minute delay with each group,” he said.

On the girls side, Peer was happy to see that only 61 seconds separated his first five runners. He also noted the performances of some of the younger students on the boys team who stepped up in the absence of the Red Storm’s top runners.

“It gave some kids some opportunities today and that was really nice to see,” he said. “They rose to the occasion on the guys’ side. We were really pleased for them.”

With another win in the books, Peer said he is proud of the team this year, especially in dealing with the added difficulties of the pandemic.

“I think we’re having a good year, both the girls and boys teams. I give all the credit to the kids because of all these challenges,” he stressed. “They want to be here, they want to practice, and they want to be with their friends. And they’ve gotten better. They want to do the work, and we couldn’t be more happy with the way the season’s gone.”

The next meet for Saranac Lake is tentatively slated for Saturday, Nov. 7 against Seton Catholic at Dewey Mountain starting at 2 p.m.

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