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by Matt Deutsch
If the other teams in the Suburban League were hoping to get a jump on the Hudson boys cross country squad, they have their work cut out for them.
That's because the Explorers, the defending champions in the National Conference of the Suburban League, topped all challengers at the Suburban League Super Duals Sept. 3 at Silver Creek Metro Park in Norton.
Hudson finished 7-0 against the other members of the National Conference. The Super Duals was contested in two conferences -- the National and the American.
The Explorers defeated Brecksville-Broadview Heights (20-39), North Royalton (15-48), Twinsburg (20-42), Stow-Munroe Falls (17-46), Cuyahoga Falls (15-49), Wadsworth (25-32) and Nordonia (17-46).
Wadsworth posted a 6-1 record to place second and Brecksville (5-2) captured third.
Ryan Adkins of Twinsburg finished in first place out of 144 runners wita time of 16 minutes, 18 seconds.
Hudson sophomore Evan Manley placed second with an effort of 16:26.
Rounding out the top five for the Explorers were senior Blake Roberts (fourth in 16:35), sophomore Adam Beucler (ninth in 16:49), junior Eric Halford (13th in 17:01) and sophomore Jacob Russo (14th in 17:03).
In addition to Hudson's prowess in the varsity race, the Explorers junior varsity team also captured the open race in the National Conference.
Andrew Edwards of Wadsworth won the open race, posting a time of 17:53 in the process. Hudson sophomore Brian Kinnear crossed the finish line in second place, registering an effort of 18:08.
In addition, freshman Luke Good placed fourth with a time of 18:30 and freshman Andrew Goldslager captured fifth in 18:31.
Up next for the Explorers were freshman Colin Palmieri in seventh place (18:33) and sophomore Hunter Norman in eighth place (18:37).
Hudson head coach Mark McConnell was pleased with the effort of both the varsity and junior varsity squads at the Super Duals. The performance has set the Explorers up well in terms of their standing in the Suburban League.
"I was very happy with the performance of the team in both races," McConnell said. "We went into this race knowing that the league field was going to give us their best since we're the defending league champions.
"Wadsworth ran a lot closer this week, and it was a lot closer this time around.
"We also ran a lot better overall this week. At the end of the day, we took care of our business at Silver Creek."
The other teams in the National Conference will have an uphill battle, so to speak, when it comes to catching Hudson. However, McConnell is not about to let the Explorers rest on their laurels.
"Right now, the rest of the league is chasing us," he said. "Wadsworth is very close and they will be all season. We're going to have to continue to work hard to keep the advantage that the guys have built this weekend."
Hudson is scheduled to run in the Wooster Invitational Sept. 10 at 8:30 a.m.