The Darien boys cross country team captured its third straight Class L Championship Saturday at Wickham Park in Manchester. The Blue Wave, ranked No. 2 in Connecticut, defeated No. 4 Hall by scoring 40 points to Hall's 56.
"It was an incredible win," Darien coach Tyson Kaczmarek said. "Man, the guys ran hard. We knew Hall was going to be a challenge. They are well-coached and rapidly improving. They are one of the top teams in Connecticut. We knew we couldn't make mistakes and beat them."
Alex Ostberg used an early move to place distance on the field en route to winning the 3.1-mile race in 15:34, nearly a course record. Following Ostberg were Marshall Huffman in fourth in 16:30 and Armstrong Noonan in fifth in 16:30 as well.
"Marshall was simply amazing," Kaczmarek said. "He is locked in. It is a thing of beauty to watch him run."
Huffman and Noonan made solid moves with about 1 mile to go, each jumping 5 or 6 spots.
"That was crucial. Huffman was able to negate Hall's 2-3 finish by their top runners," Kaczmarek said. "Then Noonan gave us the advantage we needed for the rest of the race."
"Olsen's finish was excellent. He gets going in the race about halfway through," Kaczmarek said. "He just kept picking people off. That was what we needed."
Peter Kreuch was 23rd in 17:32, and Brian Davey was 25th in 17:35 to round out the top seven.
"We are in great position for the State Open Friday," Kaczmarek said. "Alex is in fantastic shape, probably the best he has ever been in and that is pretty scary to say the least."
Ostberg, Huffman, and Noonan earned All-State honors. For Huffman, it was his second time earning the honor as he was also All-State as a junior.
"We know what it feels like to lose this meet," Kaczmarek said. "We had no plans on having that feeling today."
NOTES: Darien has won the state title in four of the last five seasons... Darien won Class L 2011-13 while winning Class MM in 2009... Darien was second in Class L in 2010 and second in Class MM in 2008 and 2007... The four state titles are the only four Darien has won in school history in boys cross country... Ostberg, Huffman and Kreuch become the only male Darien athletes to win three state cross country titles.