MDI girls win second straight Festival of Champions title; Waterville’s Brown sets meet record

The varsity boys race begins at the Cross Country Festival of Champion at the Troy Howard Middle School in Belfast, Saturday, Sept. 29 2012.
Terry Farren/BDN
The varsity boys race begins at the Cross Country Festival of Champion at the Troy Howard Middle School in Belfast, Saturday, Sept. 29 2012.
Posted Sept. 29, 2012, at 8:19 p.m.
Last modified Sept. 29, 2012, at 8:39 p.m.
Marisa Agger of Scarborough (from left), Madeline Roberts of Falmouth, and Caroline Colan of Maranacook stay close during the early minutes of the Cross Country Festival of Champions at the Troy Howard Middle School in Belfast, Saturday, Sept. 29 2012.
Terry Farren/BDN
Marisa Agger of Scarborough (from left), Madeline Roberts of Falmouth, and Caroline Colan of Maranacook stay close during the early minutes of the Cross Country Festival of Champions at the Troy Howard Middle School in Belfast, Saturday, Sept. 29 2012.
Mike Tate of Dr. JH Gillis Regional High School of Nova Scotia wins the boys seeded race at the Cross Country Festival of Champions at the Troy Middle School in Belfast, Saturday, Sept. 29 2012.
Terry Farren/BDN
Mike Tate of Dr. JH Gillis Regional High School of Nova Scotia wins the boys seeded race at the Cross Country Festival of Champions at the Troy Middle School in Belfast, Saturday, Sept. 29 2012.
Bethanie Brown of Waterville High School takes an early lead and holds it to win the girls seeded race at the Cross Country Festival of Champions at the Troy Howard Middle School in Belfast, Saturday, Sept. 29 2012.
Terry Farren/BDN
Bethanie Brown of Waterville High School takes an early lead and holds it to win the girls seeded race at the Cross Country Festival of Champions at the Troy Howard Middle School in Belfast, Saturday, Sept. 29 2012.

BELFAST, Maine — The Mount Desert Island girls and the Cumberland, R.I., boys each won a virtual photo finish to win team titles Saturday at the 11th annual Maine Cross Country Festival of Champions.

MDI, the reigning Class B state champion, edged Bonny Eagle of Standish by four points, 125-129, to win the girls crown from among 50 scoring teams. Camden Hills of Rockport was a close third, six points behind Bonny Eagle, while Cheverus of Portland (2-1) and Waterville (271) rounded out the top five teams.

MDI, which won the girls team title for the second straight year, was led by Maggie Painter’s eighth-place finish.

Waterville Senior High School senior Bethanie Brown set a meet record to win the girls’ individual title in 17 minutes, 56.69 seconds over the 5K course. That time, which surpassed the previous meet standard of 17:59 set by Abbey Leonardi of Kennebunk in 2010, enabled Brown to comfortably defeat runnerup Jillian Forsey of Stephenville, Newfoundland, who placed second in 18:28.

Erzsebet Nagy, a senior from Lawrence of Fairfield who finished second in last year’s race, placed third in 18:33, followed by Samantha Cox of Bonny Eagle, Brittany Bowman of Camden Hills and sixth-place Carsyn Koch of Washburn.

Cumberland, R.I., won the boys team title for the fourth time in this event’s history, edging second-place Lewiston by a single point, 195-196.

The winners were led by a second-place finish by Trevor Crawley, and while Lewiston had three top-20 finishers led by eighth-place Mohamed Barre, the Rhode Island team had just enough depth to earn the victory.

The top five teams in the boys meet were separated by just 15 points, with 2011 champion Falmouth placing third with 203 points, followed by Cape Elizabeth (208) and Scarborough (210).

Mike Tate, a senior from Dr. J.H. Gillis Regional High School in Antigonish, Nova Scotia, set meet and course records in winning the boys individual title after placing second in the event last year.

Tate’s time of 15:26.64 topped the previous mark of 15:33 set by Brunswick’s Will Geoghegan in 2009 and was nearly 11 seconds ahead of Crawley’s runnerup time of 15:37.16.

Josef Holt-Andrews of Telstar of Bethel finished third in the boys field, with Jack Pierce of Merriconeag-Waldorf of Freeport fourth and Bangor’s Jonathan Stanhope fifth.

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