Caribou’s Dylan Marrero, the lone Aroostook County runner to qualify for the New England Cross Country Championships, placed 139th out of 259 runners at the meet held in Manchester, New Hampshire, on Saturday, Nov. 10.
Marrero, a senior, finished with a time of 17 minutes and 44.4 seconds on the five-kilometer course held at Derryfield Park.
“Like always, he competed with a lot of heart and determination,” said his coach, Roy Alden. “The course was extremely hilly with 40 mile per hour winds, lots of hills and lots of mud, so under the conditions, he and most of the runners were about a minute off their best time.
“But being able to compete with the best athletes in New England and make it to an event like that is a lifetime experience,” Alden added.
The race capped a successful high school running career for Marrero, who won several regular season meets this season and finished as the runner-up at the Penobscot Valley Conference championships in Presque Isle Oct. 13 and at the Class B North regionals in Belfast Oct. 20. At the state meet Oct. 27, also in Belfast, Marrero finished sixth overall and became one of very few Viking runners ever to qualify for the New Englands.
Marrero’s Vikings placed second in the PVC, second in the regionals and sixth at the state competition. He was named to the all-conference first team in the PVC and also was named an Aroostook League all-star.