Zariel Macchia of of Floyd during the state Federation cross...

Zariel Macchia of of Floyd during the state Federation cross country championship race at Bowdoin Park, Wappingers Falls on Saturday Nov. 18, 2023. Credit: Errol Anderson

WAPPINGERS FALLS, N.Y. - Zariel Macchia wanted to race again.

The Floyd junior wasn’t planning to run the state Federation cross country championship before last week.

But after placing second in the Class A public school state championship last Saturday, Macchia said she was missing something.

“States was definitely a good effort and a hard race, but I felt like I never really got to a point where I was really racing,” Macchia said. “It was more of just a really good, hard run and effort, but I felt like I never really got into the race.”

Macchia elected to race in the state Federation championship on Saturday and ran Bowdoin Park’s 5-kilometer course for the first time.

Macchia won in 17 minutes 59.4 seconds, beating out Saratoga Springs’ Emily Bush, who won the Class A public school state championship over Macchia last weekend, by 24.9 seconds.

Bush led the race early before Macchia said she caught her and grabbed the lead scaling one of Bowdoin Park’s many uphills.

“I’ve been running a lot of hills this season. I felt like I could really feel that today during the race,” Macchia said. “I thought it was important to get that in and race with Emily and the other girls again before I go into regionals and nationals.”

Macchia said she plans to run the Foot Locker Northeast Regional in Boston next Saturday. Macchia’s win at the state Federation championship sets her up for her regional qualifier and a shot at qualifying for Foot Locker’s national championship in December.

“I think I’m prepared now for these races coming up,” Macchia said. “Just because I’m in great shape now doesn’t mean running is going to be easy. Running hard is still hard. So, I feel like that was a good lesson to take away from states and put that to use today.”

Bayport-Blue Point’s Sophia McInnes finished third in 18:33.1. McInnes, who won the Class B title at the public school state championship last weekend, said she plans to run the Nike Cross Regional next Saturday at Bowdoin Park.

For McInnes, Saturday’s state Federation championship refreshed her memory of a course she ran earlier this year and tested her against some of the other top runners in the state.

“I just wanted to have a good experience going out with fast people before NXR. And it was fun to see where I would be in that big group of fast people,” McInnes said. “It helps a lot knowing about the course, knowing what’s next up in the race, knowing where I am. It just helps me to know where and when I can push myself.”

Long Island placed 10 runners in the Top 40. Mt. Sinai’s Cali Gabrielson finished 11th in 19:07.4, and Paige Sheiffele finished 14th in 19:11.2. East Meadow’s Zaria Hall finished 15th in 19:13.5, and Westhampton’s Lily Strebel finished 17th in 19:18.1.

Sayville, which repeated as Class B team champions at the public school state championship last weekend, finished fifth with 217 points on Saturday. Isabella Gerena finished 26th in 19:43.6 as the Golden Flashes’ top runner.

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