POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. – Clutching a big black umbrella dripping with an all-morning drizzle while wiping away happy tears, Chris Glavin waited anxiously to hug her all-grown-up-now son in a classic proud-mom moment.
Twelve hours before his 17th birthday, McQuaid senior Donovan “Donny” Glavin, had qualified for the Nike Cross national high school cross country championship Saturday on a rugged hillside along the east bank of the Hudson River.
“I am so, so happy,” Donny said. “This is just so awesome. I can’t believe it”
His finish, in 16 minutes, 3.2 seconds, extends a streak of eight straight years a Rochester-area runner has qualified. He is the sixth boy to go, second from McQuaid.
“Some way, somehow,” Chris said, “I’m going to get to Portland.” Anticipating a week’s vacation in the home city of Nike headquarters, she said “I cannot not go now.”
Donny’s fifth-place finish on the historic 3.1-mile Bowdoin Park course was the result of “a really fast start, and throwing in a surge” in the last half mile. Webster Thomas junior Amanda Vestri used the same strategy and was Section V’s top girl, 27th in her race. The top five individuals not on qualifying teams advance, all expenses paid.
When Donny slumped onto a picnic table just beyond the finishing chute of his race, he lowered his head to his arms, remembering his late father, Pete. Then he pulled on a black windbreaker to get warm, but paused and lifted the waistband for a peek at his shirt.
Across the chest of a neon blue singlet was “PG TC. Camp Dingle.”
It honors his dad, who died of brain cancer, and the late Tony Canali, a McQuaid coach and guidance counselor who died of leukemia in 2009.
Camp Dingle? That’s a sort-of-a-hideaway training location on Lower Dingle Hill Road in Delaware County. It’s where McQuaid coach Todd Stewart’s family has a place and where he takes his team to camp out and pound hills in July.
“I am sooo glad I decided to run here instead of at Foot Locker,” Donny said. A week ago he had cruised to an easy but unsatisfying victory at the Jesuit championships at Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx, site of Saturday’s Foot Locker regional.
“He told me afterward he hated the course,” Stewart said.
“I didn’t like the steps in the back, and the railroad ties along the path,” Donny said.
“Last day as a 16-year-old,” Stewart cracked. “I was confident he could do it, and he was, too. What a way to go out as Sweet 16. Are we going to throw a party!”
There’s also apt to be a party in the Lawler household Sunday as well. Pittsford Mendon sophomore Nathan Lawler was 8½ seconds back of Glavin in ninth, but if East Aurora’s team is selected Sunday as an at-large entry (it’s very likely), Lawler moves to fifth and final qualifying position, since top teams Liverpool and Fayetteville-Manlius placed three runners in the top eight. Lawler filled out required paperwork after the race, just in case.
“I had no idea I was possible for a qualifying spot,” Lawler said, “until about two hours after the race. I got so tired going up the hill in the first mile and a half, I didn’t know if I could hold on. The competition is so tough!”
That was primarily why his team stayed stuck in sixth, same spot as a year ago here.
“There are so many good teams very close in talent,” Mendon coach Chris Compson said. “We had what we thought was a disappointing day overall, but considering the field, we did all right.”
An hour south at Foot Locker, Wheatland-Chili’s Alex Hogue was the top finisher in 32nd. Top 10 go to nationals in San Diego. East Rochester’s Dawson Bathgate, still feeling the effects of the fever and flu symptoms that hit him the week before Federations, was 44th.
Jim Castor, retired assistant sports editor of the Democrat and Chronicle, has covered cross country and road racing in the Rochester area for more than five decades. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
NIKE N.Y. REGIONALS
Eleventh annual Nike Cross Nationals New York State Regional Cross Country qualifying races for national championship Dec. 5, held on the 5K (3.1-mile) Bowdoin Park open loop course in the town of Poughkeepsie, Dutchess County. Top two teams (*), top five individuals (*) not on qualifying teams, qualify for national race in Portland, Ore. Third- and fourth-place teams and additional individuals may be chosen as at-large qualifiers by a national selection panel Sunday.
Teams (27): 1. Liverpool Warriors* 77 points, 2. Fayetteville-Manlius Cross Country Club* 107, Aurora Runners 109. Rochester area: 6. Pittsford Mendon 175, 13. Honeoye Falls-Lima Cougars 308, 19. Webster Thomas Titan Ridgerunners 513.
Individuals (233 finishers): 1. Ben Petrella*, Liverpool Warriors 15 minutes, 31.4 seconds. Rochester-area finishers: 5. Donovan Glavin*, McQuaid 16:03.2, 9. Nathan Lawler, Pittsford Mendon 16:11.6, 32. Henry Burton, PMe 16:41.4, 36. Jackson Tate, Honeoye Falls-Lima 16:42.9, 37. Liam Lyle, HF-L 16:43.1, 57. Griffin Hess, PMe 16:57.2, 62. Majd Rouhana, Fairport 17:02.9, 68. Isaac Goodman, PMe 17:07.2, 71. Nick Neamtu, Webster Thomas 17:09.4, 85. Casey Woodward, PMe 17:18.5, 89. Stephen Loce, WTh 17:22.1, 95. Nolan Hoh, HF-L 17:24.4, 103. Bryan Tornatore, HF-L 17:27.7, 104. Samuel Trawick, PMe 17:28.1, 121. Jasper Suhr, WTh 17:44.5, 140. David Harvey, HF-L 17:55.1, 186. Devin Perry, HF-L 18:31.4, 193. Jason Ziskind, WTh 18:37.5, 195. Cole Ziskind, WTh 18:39.3, 196. Riley Maloney, WTh 18:40.2, xx. Connor Fitzgerald, PMe xx:xx, 199. Tommy Hanley, WTh 18:43.1, 202. Zachary Szczublewski, HF-L 18:49.5, 231. Colin Shellard, Irondequoit 21:24.1.
Teams (15): 1. Fayetteville-Manlius Cross Country Club* 38, 2. Saratoga Springs Kinetic* 80, 3. North Rockland Lady Raiders 117. Rochester area: 7. Webster Thomas Titan Ridge Runners 194, 15. Pittsford Mendon Vikings 366.
Individuals (142 finishers): 1. Kaitlyn Neal, F-M 17:37.8. Rochester-area finishers: 27. Amanda Vestri, WTh 19:14.8, 39. Anna Kostarellis, Churchville-Chili 19:41.3, 40. Ellie Songer, WTh 19:41.8, 41. Hayleigh Palotti, Livonia 19:42.9, 57. Natalie Neamtu, WTh 20:03.8, 62. Claire Ashton, WTh 20:07.3, 66. Sydney McDaniel, Honeoye Falls-Lima 20:14.9, 69. Megha Singh, PMe 20:17.2, 70. Haley Arguien, C-C 20:19.4, 72. Chloe Weaver, Red Creek 20:23.0, 76. Kate Welch, WTh 20:28.4, 99. Julia Tomanovich, PMe 21:01.5, 103. Madeleine Shellard, Irondequoit 21:08.4, 107. Jamie Amoroso, PMe 21:28.9, 117. Alena Wisniewski, WTh 21:51.0, 118. Jing Chang, PMe 21:53.6, 121. Katherine Novak, PMe 21:55.7.
Complete results on-line at www.leonetiming.com
FOOT LOCKER REGIONALS
Foot Locker Northeast Regional cross country qualifying races on the 5K (3.1-mile) Van Cortlandt Park course in the Bronx. Top 10 individuals qualify for national championship Dec. 12 in San Diego, Cal. State team medals to top five in each of the 11 participating states, Washington, D.C. and children of military personnel living overseas. Overall medals to top 24.
Boys championship (168 finishers)
1. Noah Affolder, Carthage H.S., Fort Drum, Jefferson County 15:23.9. Rochester-area finishers: 32. Alex Hogue, Wheatland-Chili H.S., Scottsville 16:20.4, 44. Dawson Bathgate, East Rochester H.S., Pittsford 16:27.1, 95. Brad Farnham, Penfield H.S. 17:10.7, 120. Rob Grasso, Victor H.S. 17:41.6, 159. Aaron Clark, Wheatland-Chili H.S., Scottsville 19:31.3.
Girls championship (104 finishers)
1. Madeleine Davison, Wexford, Pa. 17:39.1. Rochester-area entries: None.