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Big Blue Beat: Girls' Varsity Cross Country Team

By Kristine Fu '19

Head Coach:
Tim Grant

Last season's highlights:
Last fall, the Girls' Varsity Cross Country Team, led by captains Anna Wood '18 and Ellen Li '17, enjoyed a successful season, despite having transferred from Non-Public "B" to the more competitive "A" division. (Teams are classified each year into either the "A" or "B" division depending on school size and the number of schools fielding teams; Big Blue last won Non-Public "A" in 1999.) They placed second at the Shore Coaches Invitational (Anna took second in 19:59 and Nicole Vanasse '20 placed fourth in 20:09), captured the Skyland Conference Valley Division Championship title, and placed seventh at the NJSIAA Non-Public "A" Championships.

What to watch for this season:
This year's team, once again classified in the Non-Public "A" division, is led by captains Anna Wood '18 and Cathleen Parker '19, who have been preparing the team of six seniors, five juniors, one sophomore, and nine incoming freshmen for another strong season. They have been hard at work over the summer, building up their endurance and mileage through Coach Grant's comprehensive workout program. To encourage team bonding, they plan to take a six-day preseason trip to Lake Placid, New York from August 15-20.

Full Court Press:

"This is a very talented team that will look to win the Newark Academy Invitational, Shore Coaches Invitational, defend its Skyland Conference Valley Division title, win the Prep Championship, and the Non-Public "A" state title. This could be a very special year."—Head Coach Tim Grant

"This season, I'm really excited to see what we can accomplish both with our returning runners and our incoming teammates. Cathleen, Lily [Rockoff '19], Nikki [Vanasse '20], and Grace [Brown '19] performed really well this past year in cross country and track, and will be strong members of the team. We also have lots of incoming freshmen talent. My hope is that we lower our averaged time from last year through improvement and teamwork." —Anna Wood '18

Andrea Dawson, Senior Writer,