For the combined 36th time since 1986 -22 Boys and 14 Girls – the Londonderry Middle School has won the Tri-County Track and Field Championship.
For the Girls team this is their second championship in a row after a long drought during the first decade of this century. The event was held in Merrimack this year on June 3rd. Talking with the coaches before the event the Girls were expected to be very competitive with Merrimack and Bedford offering tough competition, while the Boys could be anywhere from first to fourth. But when the day ended, both teams had won by comfortable margins.
The Girls were an incredible 34 points ahead of Bedford and 39 ahead of Merrimack, 113, 79,74. The Boys totaled 98 points to comfortably best Timberlanes’ 78 and Bedfords’ 66.
The Girls got their scoring in the Track part of the competition. In the Preliminaries of the 100 Meter Hurdles Londonderry placed two runners in the finals – 8th grader Lexi Freire and 7th grader Krista Fletcher -, as did Bedford. Cracking the top 15 runners in the event were 8th grader Rachel Martinez and 6th grader Michelle Marino tied for 11th and 6th grader Alivia Proulx in 15th. In the finals of the event Freire was a half second faster than anyone else and took the top spot, while Fletcher took sixth.
In the 100 Meter Dash, LMS had six girls in the top 18 – 8th graders Kaitlin Marchant 2nd, Ellie Goodspeed 3rd and Samantha Lacaroz 18th, and 7th graders Jessica Brien 6th, Halle Hamiliton 7th and Victoria Kelly 12th. In the finals, Goodspeed bested the field in a tight race with Marchant coming in 4th and Brien 5th a half second off the lead.
In the 200 Meter Dash, the Storm girls had 4 in the top ten. Goodspeed and Brien finished 2 and 3 respectfully behind the winner from Elm Street. Marchant was 5th and Victoria Kelly 10th. In the 400 Meter Dash LMS’ best finish was 8th grader Bella Ziolek in 5th place. 8th graders Tatianna King (10), Olivia Palumbo(12), Anna Kemball-Cook(21), Sarah Court( 26) and Laura Doherty (33), and Hamilton 13th.
In the 800 Meter Run Londonderry placed six runners in the top 15. 8th grader Gretchen McGrath crossed the finish line more than 7 seconds ahead of the second place runner, another LMS Girl, Mikala Eacrett, a 7th grader. Ziolek was 5th, Kalin Gregoire was 9th, 6th grader Kaelyn Rourke was 12th and Emily Buttafucco was 15th. LMS dominated the 1600 Meter Run with 4 girls in the top 7 including all three top spots. McGrath, Eacrett and Gregoire were 1-2-3. Alex Seeley was 7th.
The 4×100 Meter Relay Race was razor close as the LMS team of Lacaroz, Brien, Freire and Goodspeed finished three-tenths of a second ahead of Bedford. In the 4×400 Relay Race Londonderry had it a little easier taking a six and a half second victory over Bedford. Running in that group were Marchant, Ziolek, McGrath and Devyn Enwright.
Timberlane, Merrimack and Bedford split up the points in the Field events. In the Long Jump four Londonderry girls finished between 11 and 16th place, Hamilton, Brien, Megan Fedele and Anna Sampson, all 7th graders which may bode well for LMS next year. Eighth grader Julia Fitzgibbons had a 7th place in the discus and an 18th in the shot put.
This girls team is huge in numbers. To watch them run over to the high school to practice is like watching the start of a popular 5K race. Eighth graders on the team that were not already mentioned are Camille Lamont, Carina Davidson and Abby Dolan. Captains are Freire, Goodspeed, Marchant, McGrath, Lacaroz and new Class President Bella Ziolek. The 7th grade captain is Eacrett. Coaches are Sarah Franklin and Bill McCarthy who we are having on our cable show OUR TOWN when we go into the studio June 20th.
On the Boys side long time Coaches John Hill and Brandon Stumpf brought home yet another Championship, making a total of 22 since 1986. Incredible! In the 100 Meter Hurdles Preliminaries only Calab Brown qualified for the finals for LMS, with Nolan Bartlett, Luca Amerena and Nick Daileanas just off the qualifying time 15.6. In the finals, Merrimack had three runners but Brown came up big shaving more than half a second off his time and taking the 2nd spot one tenth of a second behind the winner from Bedford. Eighth grader Owen MacIntyre was the lone finalist from Londonderry in the 100 Meter Dash and he scored a second place finish in a virtual dead heat with an Elm Street runner at 12.2 seconds. In the 4×100 Meter Relay LMS finished fourth .8 seconds behind the winners from Timberlane.
Londonderry did not place a runner in the finals of the 200 Meter Dash, while in the 400Meter Dash Declan Hotter scored points with a fourth place finish. In the 4×400 Relay the Storm Boys placed third over a half minute behind a blistering time by Bedford.
Once again, as in many years before, in the distance runs, LMS piled on the points. In the 800 Meter Run Chris Zaino took the top spot with Tim Zepf a close second. Jack Stuart was 12th and Ian Goodspeed 13th. In the 1600 meter Run, Zaino dominated the field as the only runner to best 5 minutes. Zepf took second place. Stuart finished 8th.
In the Field events, MacIntyre hit 17 feet 2.25 inches in the long jump giving LMS big points in capturing second place in the event. Calab Brown was 6th and Zaino 13th. In the Discus, three LMS Boys were in the top nine, John Michael Hughes in 9th, Daileanas in 7th and Kyle Freire who grabbed a point in 6th. Owen MacIntyre, once again, came up huge for LMS in the Shot Put with a throw of 40 feet, good enough for first place and another 10 points. In the High Jump, seventh grader Matt Corey was the only participant to clear the bar over 5 feet as he topped out at 5’2″ to win the event. It was just a few weeks ago when young Mr. Corey came to school sporting a cast on his broken arm. Despite the obvious pain and discomfort, Matt continued daily training and came thru like the champion that he is. While some athletes will bow out of a contest because they have an upset tummy, others, like Matt Corey, are true warriors who refuse to be kept from the field of competition. Great job!
Once again, we’ll have some of the coaches on OUR TOWN and the show should be shown the last week of June and into July.