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MIAA girls’ all-state cross-country championships

Girls’ cross-country championships: For Natick’s Grace Connolly, no competition

Natick’s Grace Connolly was running all by herself by the 2-mile mark.
Natick’s Grace Connolly was running all by herself by the 2-mile mark. (George Rizer for the Globe)

WRENTHAM — Just as she has done all fall, Natick junior Grace Connolly bolted to the front of the pack at the sound of the gun, gradually separating herself from the field. By the 2-mile mark, there was no one in sight. Connolly cruised to her second straight girls’ Division 1 All-State title, completing the 3.1-mile course at the Wrentham Developmental Center in 17 minutes, 50.18 seconds.

“I just really wanted to push myself and charge the hills,” said Connolly. “My goal for this season was to win All-States and now it’s all about preparation for Foot Locker Regionals [in New York] next weekend.”

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Connolly was neck and neck in the first 800 meters with Milton senior Bridget Mitchell, who, along with her teammates, moved up to Division 1 from D2 this season.

But with each rolling hill, Connolly’s lead expanded.

Mitchell finished third at 18:08.39 behind Wellesley junior Maggie Donahue (18:07.53).

“It’s super exciting having Bridget [Mitchell] in D1 because it’s just one more person to push me,” Connolly said. “It made me a little more nervous but it was good nerves. It gives the pressure to push it even harder and finish even stronger.”

Concord-Carlisle (116 points) captured the Division 1 team title, nosing out Wellesley (122) and Tewksbury (143).

In the Division 2 race, Littleton junior Sarah Roffman (18:12.40) used a strong finishing kick to edge Nauset’s Madaket Nobili (18:26.98) and Eve Feuerbach of Manchester Essex (18:26.73).

“It’s definitely something that I’ve had to get used to,” said Roffman, who is running cross-country for the first time. “We’ve done so many workouts where we run up a hill but you have to push yourself to keep going as fast as possible. Our course has a mile uphill on it, so that’s something we take advantage of.”

Her twin sister, Kaitlyn (18:40), finished seventh, and Littleton was sixth overall.

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Mount Greylock (87) won the D2 title, Nauset (125) was second, and Lenox Memorial (126) third.

Division 1 All-State Championship

at Wrentham Developmental Center

Individual — 1. Grace Connolly, Natick, 17:50.18; 2. Maggie Donahue, Wellesley, 18:07.53; 3. Bridget Mitchell, Milton, 18:08.39; 4. Sophia Jacobs-Townsley, Amherst-Pelham, 18:19.12; 5. Rebekah James, Shepherd Hill, 18:48.12; 6. Caroline Barry, Newton South, 18:49.17; 7. Sophie DeFreitas, Lincoln-Sudbury, 18:51.77; 8. Einat Gavish, Newton North, 18:51.99; 9. Ashley Foley, Beverly, 18:53.92; 10. Tess Reyes, Algonquin, 18:56.42; 11. Rachel Sessa, Tewksbury, 19:02.43; 12. Jamie Falla, Wachusett, 19:03.33; 13. Loren Andrews, Wellesley, 19:03.36; 14. Gabrielle Lawrence, Shepherd Hill, 19:05.3; 15. Mary Yount, Northampton, 19:06.2.

1. Concord-Carlisle, 116; 2. Wellesley, 122; 3. Tewksbury, 143; 4. Shepherd Hill, 153; 5. Milton, 169.

Division 2 All-State Championship

at Wrentham Developmental Center

Individual — 1. Sarah Roffman, Littleton, 18:12.4; 2. Madaket Nobili, Nauset, 18:26.98; 3. Eve Feuerbach, Manchester Essex, 18:28.73; 4. Ashley Walker, Westwood, 18:35.2; 5. Rachael Johnson, Coyle & Cassidy, 18:38.49; 6. Stephanie Casaletto, Austin Prep, 18:39.79; 7. Kaitlyn Roffman, Littleton, 18:40.84; 8. Mari Avola, Stoneham, 18:49.8; 9. Meghan Davis, Mohawk Trail, 18:54.64; 10. Sarah Conant, Westwood, 18:57.15.

1. Mt. Greylock, 87; 2. Nauset, 125; 3. Lenox, 126; 4. Westwood, 147; 5. Hamilton-Wenham, 172.

Littleton junior Sarah Roffman was right on time in the Division 2 race.
Littleton junior Sarah Roffman was right on time in the Division 2 race.(George Rizer for The Globe)
Sarah Roffman used a strong finishing kick to win the D2 race.
Sarah Roffman used a strong finishing kick to win the D2 race.(George Rizer for The Globe)
Natick’s Grace Connolly had the course to herself — except for the fans.
Natick’s Grace Connolly had the course to herself — except for the fans.(George Rizer for The Globe)
Grace Connolly  won the Division 1 race in 17 minutes, 50.18 seconds.
Grace Connolly won the Division 1 race in 17 minutes, 50.18 seconds. (The Boston Globe)

Grace Connolly and her father, Mike.
Grace Connolly and her father, Mike. (George Rizer for The Globe)