By PHIL BRODSKY
Orange Live Sports Writer
Coach Sean Mahon made no secret of his disappointment with the results from last week’s Southern Connecticut Conference-Housatonic Division girls’ cross country show down. While Mahon expected Cheshire to beat both Amity and Shelton, he did not expect to see his girls also bow to Shelton. Cheshire easily defeated the Lady Spartans 20-36 but was surprised to Shelton clip his girls, 24-31.
With those two setbacks, Amity ends its dual meet season with a 5-5 record (2-2 in Housy action).
“I knew Cheshire had a very good team and we had anticipated that they would defeat us, but quite honestly, Shelton surprised us. They brought a very competitive edge to the meet, and we did not respond,” Mahon said. “I thought we ran o.k. There were some time improvements. Even though we are rebuilding this year, when teams race us, they get fired up. We just didn’t reach the level of ferocity that was needed for that race. We beat Shelton last year so they must have wanted vengeance for that loss.”
Lisa Gorham was Amity’s top finisher. She placed third (out of 78 runners) with a time of 19 minutes, 57 seconds on the Lady Spartans’ three mile Fitzgerald Trail course in Woodbridge. Minnie Chen (7th—20:19), Melissa Taggert (12th—21:17), Sarah Stein (14th—21:19), Grace Leyden (16th—21:26) round out the list of the top five Amity finishers.
Mahon added, “Melissa Taggert I s only a freshman and she had a significant time drop. Some other time drops were far less significant. The girls know they did and didn’t do in this race. I was pleased with their preparation and effort, but not with the outcome. They ran an o.k. race. I was most displeased with the outcome because I knew they had the potential to do much better. They just didn’t get the job done as I had expected they would.”
He went on to note how much his girls have improved since the start of the season.
On Thursday, Amity will participate in the SCC Championship Meet at Hammonassett State Park in Madison. The varsity race will begin at 1:40 p.m. Mahon pointed to Hillhouse, Cheshire, and Guilford as the teams to beat. He went on to tab Cheshire as his pick to most likely win the Housy crown.
As far as his Lady Spartans go, Mahon said, “We were third last year but things are much different for many teams this year. I’d like to set a lofty goal and pick us to be in the Top Five, but it is most probable that we will end up among the top eight teams.”