Monday, November 18, 2013

Villanova Recruiting Target Brian Cook Takes Federation Title
Runs Fastest Sectional Time Ever on Bowdoin Park Course

Boys XC: Brian Cook keeps his vow 
Pearl River senior sets section record at meet

Brian Heyman
The Journal News
November 16, 2013

WAPPINGERS FALLS, NY — Brian Cook felt the sting of losing his lead with 1,000 meters to go and finishing third instead of first in Class B at the NYSPHSAA Cross Country Championships last weekend.

 But the Pearl River senior made a vow Friday, the determination dripping off his Twitter feed:

“Redemption time tomorrow #feds”

Before the Federation race Saturday at Bowdoin Park, he made another vow, this time to a Pearl River fan: “I’ll get it done.”

Then there he was, leading the parade of 248 boys, crossing the finish line and stepping into the Rockland history book and the Section 1 record book. Cook became the first runner from the county — male or female — to claim the Federation championship. And he did it in 15 minutes, 45.2 seconds, the fastest time ever for a section runner on Bowdoin’s formidable 5K course.

Cook's 15:45.2 is now 8th fastest ever on the Bowdoin Park course
 “It feels incredible, especially (since) I didn’t get my expectation or my goal, what I wanted last week at the state championships,” Cook said. There was a harsh lesson learned at states: Don’t go out so fast. Cook ran a little low on gas at the end in Queensbury.

This time, he finally took the lead about a mile and a half in and kept it. “I wanted to go out more conservative and kind of sit on the lead pack, which I did,” Cook said.

“I really turned it up the last mile or so and that helped me come to the time I got today.”

This day brought a jolt of confidence to take into the New York regional here Nov. 30, a chance to make the Nike Cross Nationals on Dec. 7 in Portland, Ore. But whatever happens, Cook will always have this day.

“He needed this,” Pirates coach Mike Kiernan said. “He deserved this. Over the past week, I actually said that I feel bad that he hadn’t won a race of this caliber. He’s plenty good enough. It just hadn’t happened.”

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