New Canaan Boys & Girls Cross Country Post Dual 7th Place Finishes at 2016 FCIAC Championships

For the second consecutive year, the FCIAC cross country championships, a race held annually in mid-October, featured weather that resembled a late summer day. On Wednesday afternoon the race temperature at Waveny Park hovered around 80 degrees—and while that type of weather is a spectator’s dream for this time of year, it turns up the heat, literally, on the runners racing in the prized contest of the conference season. In that race, both the New Canaan girls team and the New Canaan boys team finished seventh, respectively. “I think it was a solid performance by the team today,” boys head coach Bill Martin told “Anything is an improvement upon last year [finishing 10th place],” Martin said with a smile.

Back on Course: 2016 New Canaan Boys Cross Country Preview

One year ago, New Canaan boys cross country head coach Bill Martin entered the preseason optimistic that his group of boys were in for a season full of promise. Yet after injuries plagued much of the team from preseason all the way through to the postseason contests, that promise never materialized. “Our strength last year was in a couple of sophomores, Max Koschnitske and Alex Urbahn,” Martin told “But both Koschnitske (broken collarbone) and Urbahn (wrist) suffered debilitating injuries at the start of the year in separate mountain biking accidents, which set us back as a team. We finished 10th in the FCIAC’s, which was very disappointing. We had one of our near guys race toward the back of the pack [in FCIACs] and as a result we had to rely on a guy who should’ve been our eighth guy but instead was our seventh.

New Canaan Girls Cross Country 6th, Boys 10th at FCIAC Championships

After training in weather that felt more like fall–and over this past weekend, winter–during the days leading up to Wednesday’s FCIAC Cross Country Championships; on race day it resembled late-summer with the sun shining brightly on Waveny and a temperature near 75 degrees. So is the byproduct of running cross country in New England. And in what is arguably the best high school cross country conference in all of New England, the New Canaan girls team finished sixth while the New Canaan boys team finished tenth in Wednesday afternoon’s FCIAC Championships. “I’m really, really pleased,” girls head coach Art Brown told “Going in, I thought we had a shot at [defeating] Ludlowe and Darien and we beat them today, which was very satisfying.

New Canaan Boys Cross Country: Run, Rams, Run!

In his lone year as an assistant for the New Canaan boys cross country program in 2012, Bill Martin coached a squad that totaled 22 boys. Now entering his third season as head coach of program, Martin was delighted to see (approximately) 60 boys ready to go for the 2015 cross country season. “The numbers are great,” Martin told “The team has tripled in the last three years, which is always a good sign. We graduated two of our best runners (Alex Ellsworth and Spencer Lyman) last year. Both boys made All-FCIAC, 2nd team. And as a team we finished fifth in the FCIAC, which was a pretty good showing. Athletes of the Week: Alex Ellsworth and Kylie Towbin

The Athlete of the Week is sponsored by Baskin-Robbins, Connecticut Sandwich Co., Joe’s Pizza and Mackenzie’s. Congratulations to Alex Ellsworth and Kylie Towbin for being named Athletes of the Week. Ellsworth has been New Canaan’s top finisher in all but 4 of the Rams’ 18 dual cross country meets this season. The senior co-captain also led the Rams at the Wilton and Brewster Invites where the team placed first and second, respectively. Called “an exemplary leader and a good role model for our younger athletes” by head coach Bill Martin, Ellsworth’s success has helped the Rams to a 14-4 record, good for second place in the FCIAC East Division.