This past week, RVAL conducted its fall championship week, crowning champions in boys and girls cross country and soccer. Dublin was in competition for the top award in each of the four categories. Dublin walked away from the week with one Championship and three runner-up awards. This was easily the most complete performance by any school in the league. For some of our athletes, this was still a disappointment (we love that they are only satisfied with a win).
That being said, our disappointment is a mark of how far these programs have come.
Three years ago, the girls soccer team had never won an RVAL playoff game. This year, they steamrolled into their first ever finals with quarter and semifinal victories over the Academy at Charlemont and Four Rivers Charter Public School by a combined 10-0 margin. While they had a tough afternoon against Stoneleigh Burnham School, the undefeated champions, they now know what they need to do to bring home the Championship Cup.
Perhaps more remarkably, five years ago, Dublin cross country consisted of a team of four or five runners that did not run competitively. Our team could not compete in team events since we did not have the five runners necessary to field a full team. On Wednesday, two buses and a van full of runners (over 35 runners and two very determined coaches) descended on Adams Massachusetts intent on battling for multiple championships. The boys race turned into a battle between two schools - Dublin and Four Rivers Charter Public School. Four Rivers pulled out the win by six points, but no one could completely tell the outcome until a score sheet had been carefully tallied. On the girls side, Dublin was not seriously challenged in achieving its second RVAL Championship.
Our mountain biking team, while not competing in the RVAL league, achieved its highest level of success this season. A new program only six years ago, it was ranked as the third best team in the western division (out of 13 teams) and the fifth best team (out of 26 teams) overall. Two riders ranked in the top 10 in the western A division and we had multiple podium finishes throughout the season. A number of riders were moved up into a higher division during the year - an indication of their success and growth.
For some of our teams, the journey to a Championship is not yet over. While some of our seniors may not have achieved that ultimate goal, they have been a foundational part upon which our success is being built. We are proud of the effort, skill and class that they bring whenever they put on a Dublin jersey.