MANCHETSER, Conn. (WTNH) — The CIAC Cross Country State Championships came to an abrupt end after nine students were taken to the hospital for dehydration.
Wickham Park was packed with high school students competing for a state championship title on Saturday. By mid-afternoon, the temperature reached 80 degrees in Manchester.
The Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference said fire officials told race leaders the department no longer had the emergency services to cover the event.
“I’m kind of annoyed,” said Elya Anor, a runner at Norwich Free Academy. “We got here at like 12ish to start racing. We warmed up and everyone was ready to go.”
Jeff Gee, the coach for the Wilton High School Girls Cross Country team, said some of his runners experienced mild discomfort form the heat. He said their top runner’s performance was slightly off. He also said some athletes from other schools collapsed.
“These kids are running heart rates of as high as 200 beats per minute if they are working really hard and the heat could just be an overload for some,” he said.
The LL races for boys and girls were postponed and will tentatively run on Tuesday afternoon.