2023 Dover Team Blog #3 – Manch Recap

By Caitlin Cole – @DHSCCTF

Dover has officially survived another Manchester Invitational. The long day began

bright and early, seeing as most of us took the bus, which left the school at 7 a.m. sharp. Some of
us had some stellar performances; some of us got through by the skin of our teeth. Either way, it
was a meet full of learning experiences and important takeaways. It was also a very fun meet to
watch, with all of the fast times and record performances.

I have to say that the weather was nearly perfect; not hot but also not freezing, and the clouds
kept in the heat from the sun. Our Freshman girls led the way, coming in 4th place as a team, with
our top finisher (shoutout to Lily!) coming in 8th. It was so fun to watch all of the younger girls
race (and perform so well!) because they are the future of this team. Freshman boys did not have
enough members for a scoring team, same with the girls’ JVC race, but both races went smoothly.
Even just two miles of Derryfield Park is enough to destroy your legs, but everyone finished and
finished strong. Both JVB races had some great performances– not enough for a scoring team on
either side, but two of our runners had been working through some injuries so it was awesome to see
them back on the course.

Girls large-school varsity proved to be an exciting race, and Anique was our top finisher with her
(first ever!) sub-20 performance. We came in 8th overall. Boys’ varsity had a bit of a tougher day,
but showed some real perseverance. Here are Ethan & Clayton’s thoughts on how the meet went:

Ethan: “Going into this race, Clayton and I were feeling pretty well prepared to run well.
Manchester for me, has always been a little rough, as I seem to always be sick whenever the meet
rolls around. This year was no different as I ended up getting sick in the week leading up to the
race. Despite that, I was able to go into the weekend feeling healthy. I think that the results
made this very clear. I was able to PR by almost 2 minutes, running 17:40 and finishing in 99th
place. In D1, I finished 35th, which has given me a good boost of confidence. Knowing that the top
30 runners at the state meet make MOC’s, I feel as though I am in a decent place at this point in
the season with the ultimate goal being to qualify for that meet. As for now, Clayton and I will
continue to train hard to prepare for October 28th where we will come back to Manchester just one last time

Now that we’ve recovered, it’s time to take what we’ve learned into Black Bear this
Saturday! Last year, two of our girls placed in the top-10 and led the squad to a 4th place finish,
so we are hoping for another strong performance despite not having one of our top runners. Boys are
looking to improve after a tough day in Manchester, and with two of our runners back from injury/illness that should be achievable.

We’ve had some good-quality sessions throughout the last week, starting with a long run on Monday
and some hill reps for some on Wednesday and 1200s/600s at our favorite dirt track for others.
Whenever we can get a solid week of training it we make the most of it, and we are feeling prepared
for Saturday.

The Coe-Brown course is a tough one, and similar to Derryfield Park, some of us love it and some of
us hate it. The competition should be exciting, seeing as some powerhouse teams will be there like
Hanover, PEA, and Oyster River. We also have some freshman stepping up in the Varsity race, and I
am so excited to see what they do. Good luck to everyone going traveling to Northwood– Black Bear here we come!