The Newburyport boys cross-country team will not be passing off the Eastern Mass. Division 5 title to another team any time soon.
The Clippers won a D5 team championship for the third year in a row Saturday at the sectional championship meet at the Wrentham Developmental Center. Nick Carleo paced Newburyport with a second-place finish in 15:28.7. The junior missed out on his first individual Division 5 cross-country championship by 1.7 seconds — the margin that separated him from top finisher Michael Wyman of Old Rochester. Both Carleo and Wyman ran at a 4:59 mile pace.
Rounding out Newburyport’s championship squad were Tim Englehart (6th, 16:35), Joe Molvar (8th, 16:36), Tyler Newfell (10th, 16:38) and Max Vye (5th, 17:02).
It was a bit of a bounce-back performance for the Clippers — if such a thing is possible after an undefeated dual meet season. The Clippers placed fourth at the Cape Ann League Championships last weekend.
“It was so rewarding after a really tough day at the CALs,” Newburyport coach Don Hennigar said. “It was all we could have hoped for. I’ve been fortunate to be a part of a lot of Eastern Mass. championship teams, and this ranks right up there as one of the most satisfying. Some people had them left for dead after CALs.”
Newburyport will compete against the top four teams from all six divisional meets at the All-State Championships in Gardner on Saturday. Carleo will have a chance to avenge the close defeat to Wyman in the same meet. If he runs like he did Saturday, Carleo will be in the mix for an individual All-State championship.
“This was the third or fourth time Nick’s gone head to head with Wyman from Old Rochester, and he hasn’t quite got his number yet,” Hennigar said. “It’s always extremely exciting, and everybody was waiting around on Saturday to watch that race.”