This season, Walpole Boys Cross Country is 5-5 in the Bay State Conference and will compete at the MIAA Eastern Divisional Championship in Wrentham on Nov. 11. If they finish as one of the top four teams, they can qualify for the MIAA All State Championships on Nov. 18. This year, sophomore Shane Grant has led the team for the majority of the season.
Earlier this season on Sept. 30, Grant won the Division One 5K race at the Frank Kelley Invitational in Wrentham. His time of 16:40 is his fastest on the current Wrentham course which is more challenging than other courses.
“My mindset going into a race is to try to get the lead and hold on for as long as I can. I like to think just run hard for 16 minutes and you’ll get a good result,” said Grant.
Grant opened up this year’s season with an eleventh place finish in the 5,000m as Walpole defeated Framingham while losing to Newton North and Wellesley in the first meet of the year. The following meet, Grant ran the 5,000m in a personal record time of 16:16 which was good enough to earn him a third place finish and place him fifth on the 5,000m school record.
“My goal is to break 16 minutes in the 5k and help my team get to all states,” said Grant.
Grant burst onto the Walpole Cross Country scene as a freshman last year. His first big race came when he set the new school record in the 2,500m with a time of 8:02 in his first ever high school meet. Grant continued to impress as he competed in the freshman 4,000m during the Ocean State Invitational. Grant finished the race in first place out of a possible 439 spots to claim his third straight school record by completing the 4,000m in a blazing 13:26.
Grant followed up that performance by breaking his second school record as he ran the 3,000m in 10:18 finishing as the fastest freshman in Division One during the Frank Kelley Invitational meet last year.
“I hit good first year times, but later on in the season I got injured because I didn’t have any summer miles,” said Grant.
The now sophomore runner holds three school records and is currently ranked as the fifth fastest sophomore 5,000m runner in the state.
“The team this year has had a couple hard weeks of training and is very well prepared for the post season. We are very capable of making a run into all states, just got to run fast,” said Grant.