Granville’s Alicia Clark took second overall for the girls at the Greenwich Cross Country Invitational held Friday at Saratoga Spa State Park in Saratoga Springs Friday, besting runners from manyarea schools.
Clark finished off of her pace from a week prior coming in at 17:51 behind only Gianna Frontera of Class A Newburgh Free Academy, who turned in a 17:30.
Both runners were more than a minute in front of the pack running away from the field as the third place female runner collected a time of 18:53.
Clark logged the fastest time at the Burnt Hills Invitational with a 17:46.79 the week before.
Cross Country head coach Lance Jordan said Clark has been working over the past few weeks to improve her starts.
“I’ve been working on pace, trying to make sure that first mile is not too fast,” Clark said. Clark said after the race that if she had a better start she thinks she could have beaten Frontera.
Clark said afterwards she has been trying to even out her pace and turn consistent miles throughout the race, rather than what happened Friday. Starting out a bit fast, Clark said the faster first mile resulted in a slower final mile of the 3.4 mile course. “I just get a bit excited at the start of a race,” she said.
More than 100 runners lined up for the girls race just after 5 p.m. and Clark was at least initially engulfed in a sea of runners. However, by the time the race reached about halfway only Clark and Frontera were running at the lead of the pack.
This was the third time Clark raced in the park this season as several invitationals in a row are held at the scenic location. “There’ll be the league, then sectionals and ‘fingers crossed’ states in the week after,” Clark said.
While the state cross country race is held in central New York, she said she had been to look at it, just in case.
Clark said she likes running the course because it has become familiar to her and she feels knowing a course helps her to plan and time her pace better.
With several races also coming up at the park, she feels good about what she can do when she has a course committed to memory.
“It’s much nicer to know the course,” Clark said.