50th Codfish Bowl: Merrimack Sweeps, Boston College Club Running Impresses

September 22nd 
2018 Franklin Park, MA
50th Codfish Bowl
On Saturday, September 22rd, USATF New England hosted the 50th Codfish Bowl, one of the oldest cross country races in New England. Original founder Bill Squires was present to hand out the awards and speak about the history of the Codfish Bowl. Squires, now 87, founded the Codfish Bowl 50 years ago while coaching at Boston State College(Now UMASS Boston). Squires came up with the idea after noticing that numerous smaller colleges were unable to compete at the New England Championships due to their size. He felt that this was unfair and moved to create his own race. He explained that “these small schools had good talent...lets let them race!.” Squires went on to explain the rapid growth of the event, at one point drawing over 270 teams as far away as Michigan. He remembers having to go to restaurants and hotels asking them to discount services so that these teams can come to Boston. He also explains how he directed some teams to bribe school bus drivers in order to get them to agree to drive up to Franklin Park. Anyway those numbers(and bribes) are long gone. Today, the Codfish Bowl adheres to its roots, serving as a NCAA D3/Club Team showcase early in the season.

The races at 50th Codfish:

A beautiful early fall day at Franklin Park complete with sunshine and a nice breeze made for a great day! The sun was out, the course was in great condition, and the teams looking to win some fish were aplenty. First up were the women, who took the line at 12:15pm in order to conquer the challenging 5k course. 140 women spread out on 11 teams competed for the coveted Golden Codfish team prize. From early in the race, Merrimack women held four of the top five spots, holding strong and working together in order to distance themselves from the rest of the competition. By the end of the race, Merrimack’s Katherine Ferrera, Tia Foglietta, and Julia Dempsey go 1-2-3. Rounding out the top five individuals were Tina Laritz of the Boston College Running Club and high schooler Molly MacQueen of Phillips Andover. Merrimack women would win over Worcester State by a score of 23 to 95.

Immediately following the Women’s race, the men followed suit and competed for the coveted Golden Cod in an 8k race that was over shortly after it began. From the very beginning, Merrimack men controlled the race, finishing 6 in the top ten to win the race. Scoring for the Warriors were TJ Corliss(Winner in 26:45), John Sava (2nd overall), Colin Fitzpatrick(4th), Joseph Forrest, and Gunna Hasselquist. Merrimack Men won with ease over the Boston College Running Club by a score of 21 to 84. However, a note about the BC Running Club. A second place finish is the highest ever by a non-varsity team associated with a university. With 6 of their 7 scorers and displacers in their Freshman year, it is very possible this team moves on to become the first college club team to win the Codfish Bowl. Stay tuned in the coming years. Full results can be found here: http://newengland.usatf.org/Events/2018/2018-Codfish-Bowl-XC-meet.aspxdo=info&event_id=9930&year=2018

Any questions or comments can be directed to tmazza@usatfne.org