BELFAST, Maine — A new reign may be starting in the Class B girls cross country ranks.
John Bapst of Bangor, which hadn’t won an Eastern Maine title since 2004, unseated three-time defending champion Mount Desert Island Saturday, tucking all five scoring runners in the top 15 to win going away, 53 points to 84, at the Troy Howard Middle School course.
Ellsworth finished third in the 14-school Class B field with 125 points, while Presque Isle was fourth with 138 and Medomak of Waldoboro fifth (138).
The top seven teams qualified for next week’s state meet in Cumberland, as Winslow (150) and Hampden Academy (154) advanced as well.
Mount Ararat of Topsham won in Class A, and Orono took Class C.
Class B: John Bapst’s title crusade slowed down a bit at the PVC championship meet a couple weeks ago, but coach Joe Capehart’s club used the extra week of practice after the regionals were postponed to fine-tune some things.
“I think it really helped to have another week of training. That way we didn’t have to train too hard,” said sophomore Mary Carmack, the Crusaders’ No. 2 runner, who was ninth.
Carmack’s sister, freshman Adrienne, led the Bapst pack in seventh place overall while senior Kim Spencer was 11th, sophomore Sarah Dickens 12th and junior Laura Donovan 15th to round out the scoring.
All five of those purple-clad runners finished ahead of MDI’s No. 2 runner.
“This is really exciting, we’re really glad,” said Mary Carmack. “MDI definitely had a great race [at PVCs], [so] hopefully next week at states we’ll be able to use this momentum and do well.”
Spencer, one of only two seniors in the Bapst lineup, was happy to finally come out on top.
“This is my fourth time running here, so it feels good to finally win something,” she said.
Spencer’s classmate, Stesha Rudnicki, finished 38th and Jennie Wainer, a junior, 58th.
Old Town junior Dacie Manion continued her assault on the Eastern Maine trails this fall, capturing individual honors in 20 minutes, 10.5 seconds over a dry, fast 5,000-meter course.
She pulled away from two of the region’s other top runners, Alecia Palmer of Presque Isle, who finished second, and Brianne Dunn of Ellsworth, who claimed third place.
Class A: Mount Ararat edged Mt. Blue of Farmington 54-58 to win a tight race, while Brewer was fifth with 165 points, led by eighth-place finisher Sara Chavarie.
Cougars senior Melody Lam earned some redemption from conference competition as well, posting the afternoon’s fastest time at 19:37.72 to win her second straight individual crown.
“Compared to KVACs, today I felt a lot better,” said Lam. “Last week, I had a really big issue with not eating breakfast and being sick, so today I forced myself to make sure everything was OK.”
It certainly was, as she blitzed through the first mile in 5:48 and never looked back.
Mount Ararat was led by Kate Spies, who finished second.
Class C: Searsport’s Faith Mackey claimed the individual title in 21:41.43, but it was Orono winning team honors for the second year in a row.
The Red Riots edged Greenville 43-46, with Bangor Christian third with 76 points.
Cassie Clemmer was second among scoring runners to pace the Red Riots, while Holli Kenison was fourth and Leila Doerfler eighth.
Sibohan Harrity (13th) and Liz Nelson (16th) rounded out the scorers.