Boys’ cross country
Keene defends CVC Championships title — The Keene High boys’ cross country team won its fifth consecutive Connecticut Valley Conference title Friday at Fall Mountain Regional in Langdon. The Blackbirds posted a meet-low 22 points, outdistancing runner-up Hanover High’s 58 points. Monadnock Regional High finished third with 97 points.
Keene took the top three places and placed its five scoring runners in the top 10 in a field of 96 runners representing nine teams. Jake Velazquez placed first with a time of 15:55, setting a course record. Velazquez also set a course record last Saturday at the Wachusett Invitational. Nico Ramirez was second in a time of 16:08 with Torin Kindopp in third with a time of 16:13. Sergio Sartini finished sixth in a time of 16:29 and Silas Johnson placed 10th in 16:56. Also, Jonathan Hills placed 12th in a time of 17:01 and Fitsum Visser rounded out Keene’s top seven finishers, placing 19th in 17:36. Sartini, Johnson, Hills and Visser all ran personal best 5k times in this race.
Keene’s next meet will be the jayvee state meet next Friday at Alvirne High in Hudson.
Merrimack 45, Keene 6 — It was another tough night for the Blackbirds on the gridiron, as they fell to the Tomahawks in a road game Friday night. The Birds trailed 27-0 at halftime and fell to 0-6 on the season.
Hopkinton 1, ConVal 0 — The Cougars (4-8) played one of their best games of the season, Coach Carrie Whittemore said, as they gave top-ranked Hopkinton High all it could handle.
Goalie Mackenzie Anderson made 12 saves and ConVal fought off 15 corners.
Lebanon 5, Conant 1 — Bella Hayes scored the Orioles’ only goal with an assist from Elizabeth Gonyea. Abby Wheeler and Emily Mulinberg also played well, and Coach Jackie Brown said the four-goal deficit will serve as a learning experience. “Lebanon is a good team and it opened my eyes on a few things we need to work on and improve in going into the postseason,” she said. Conant will have several days to practice before taking on regional rival ConVal Regional Thursday.
Timberlane 3, Keene 1 — The Blackbirds tried to battle back against the Owls, but fell short at Scripture Field. After falling behind 1-0 at the 20-minute mark, Elyza Mitchell tied the game for Keene 10 minutes into the second half on a breakaway goal that she pushed past Timberlane’s keeper. However, the Owls answered five minutes later to take the lead for good. Keene had a penalty kick that could have tied the match after Isabelle Fleuette was tripped in the box, but the Birds couldn’t convert. Timberlane scored an insurance goal with about two minutes left. “The girls played well and battled hard after a long week,” Coach Kaleb Lique Naitove said.