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In debut, Newton South’s Lucy Jenks was the state’s Gatorade Girls’ Cross-Country Runner of the Year

Lucy Jenks cruised to the Division 1 title at the Eastern Mass. championships.FILE/GEORGE RIZER/FOR THE GLOBE

In her first season running cross-country, Newton South senior Lucy Jenks emerged as the state’s best. Limited to just three meets as she coped with a knee injury, Jenks won all three, including the Eastern Mass. Division 1 title at the Wrentham Developmental Center and the MIAA All-State Championship in Gardner.

On Monday, she was named the state’s 2019-20 Gatorade Massachusetts Girls’ Cross-Country Runner of the Year, the first runner in program history to earn the honor. She also was the Globe’s Athlete of the Year for girls’ cross-country.

“Lucy is a phenomenal runner,” said Hanna Bruno, the head coach at Dual County League rival Concord-Carlisle High, the D1 team champion.


“She was able to accomplish her success this season without having had cross-country experience or race conditioning.”

On Nov. 16, the 5-foot-5-inch Jenks recorded a three-second victory over Concord-Carlisle’s Emma Kerimo in the All-State meet, covering the 5-kilometer course in 18 minutes, 53 seconds at Gardner Municipal Golf Course. She followed with a fifth-place finish at Northeast Regionals in the Bronx.

In the fall, Jenks will join three-time Massachusetts Gatorade Runner of the Year Grace Connolly of Natick at Stanford University.

Dan Shulman can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @DanielRShulman.