Warrior Harriers Optimistic About New Opportunities
It’s been a long wait since the last official track/cross country practice was held in Wakefield, but that wait is finally over! The Wakefield Warriors cross country teams are back and they head into the season with high expectations but also a tough road ahead. The boys team is looking to continue to build on their past success while the girls look to bounce back this season and do the same. Today we will break down the teams and review their expectations for this season.
Let’s start with the boys team. The team will return eleven sophomores, six juniors, and ten seniors from last season, along with nine new freshmen. Led by Coach Pappas and senior captains Jonathan D’Ambrosio, Andrew Roos and Jack Tomsyck, the boys are looking to win their fifth consecutive Middlesex League Freedom Division title and their third state title in the last five years. “I’m excited to see what the team can do this year” says D’Ambrosio. “Things are looking pretty promising. The whole team has been putting in work all Summer for this”. Given the circumstances in 2020 and this season’s guidelines, D’Ambrosio is confident the boys will have a successful season. “We’ve been through a lot this year with current events, but like always Wakefield is ready for anything that gets thrown our way”.
The top seven is going to look a little different this year with four of the seven from 2019 returning. With the loss of Matt Roberto, Tanner Jellison and Jimmy Crump, the door is open for many potential candidates to snag one of the remaining spots. Those candidates include seniors Zack Jellison and Colin Rudy and sophomores Leith Jones and Ben Stratton, who joined the team this season. With the addition of Stratton, the top seven seems to be a little more solidified as the gap continues to close. With junior Mike Roberto sidelined to start the season, that opens up a spot for the next man up to fill that hole.
For the girls team, they look to take back the Freedom Division title for the second time in the last three years. They will bring back a roster with five seniors, four juniors, two sophomores, and seven new freshmen. They are led by Coach Barrett and senior captains Elina Olmedo, Grace Butler, and Shannon Driscoll, but only two captains will dress up as Driscoll will miss the entire season with a stress fracture in her left foot. “Obviously I’m really upset about it” said Driscoll. “But it’s still nice that I can come to practice because I love being involved with the team.” Despite the injury, the senior captain is optimistic that she will return for indoor track. “I’m super excited to come back. I definitely think that I’ll be back for indoor.” With Driscoll being out for the season, they will need someone to step up and take her spot in the top seven.
The girls’ top seven is going to have several changes this year, after losing previous captains Olivia Lucey and Retta Carroll. But these holes can easily be filled as seniors Celia Casale and Maggie Ritchie have joined the team. Elina along with junior Sammy Seabury will lead the top seven after their strong 2019 seasons, followed by seniors Grace Butler and Maggie Ritchie, sophomore Maddie Nett, junior Emma Partyka and senior Nicole Calandra.
With all that has happened so far in 2020, being able to have a cross country season is one of the few normal things to occur. Everybody is excited to be able to get back out onto the course and compete. No matter what the expectations are, no matter what the results are, it’s just a blessing to be able to have cross country in one of the strangest years of our lives. Now it’s onto our featured presentation of Wakefield cross country 2020!