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Nipmucā€™s DeZutter Finishes Top-20 In State XC Meet

Nipmuc senior Dan DeZutter capped off an impressive cross country career with a 16th place finish at the all-state

Nipmuc senior Dan DeZutter capped off an impressive cross country career with a 16th place finish at the all-state championships, improving his performance from last year's statewide meet by more than two dozen spots.
"It was a pretty good day," DeZutter said. "I felt good about the result. I started off a little slow, it was a cold day out, but once I was about 800 meters in I caught back up to some of the top runners and just ran my own race from there."
DeZutter said he finished about 20 seconds off of his goal for the Gardner course, but landed about where he hoped to in the field of some 200 runners. After finishing in the 40s last year running in a snowy all-state meet in Westfield, he felt he was more prepared this time around.
"I knew what I was going to get," DeZutter said. "It's not your typical dual meet where you have one other kid who is right up there with you. I knew there were going to be kids out in front and ones I had to stick with."
DeZutter's has shown marked improvement over the past several years in his rise to becoming one of the top runners in Massachusetts. He covered the Gardner course in about 22 minutes as a freshman and is a full five minutes faster now as a senior.
"He has come a long way since his freshman year," head coach Dick Auger said. "It's been a joy to watch him improve. I couldn't get him to run any faster than what he has been running.
He is dedicated, he had worked hard and I think he reached the potential he could possibly reach."
DeZutter's high
school career is far from over. The two-time
cross country captain
will compete in the Footlocker Regional cross country meet in New York City this weekend and then will turn his attention to the winter and spring track and field seasons.
He said he plans to continue his running career in college, but is undecided as to where
he will attend. Auger
said DeZutter has the physical and mental drive to be successful no matter where he ends up.
"He is a great kid to
work with, he's very
coachable," Auger said. "I can't say enough about him. It's been a pleasure to coach him as a Nipmuc athlete, now I have to look forward to seeing him in indoor track and hopefully he continues to move forward."




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