Make no mistake about it! It is EARLY in the 2019 Winter Track and Field season! After week #2, all teams have at least 1 meet under their belts, all cross country runners are now beginning to compete as we are enter the holiday week. While we know all coaching staffs are looking forward to the post-holiday portion of the season when teams will experience consistency with training and racing (please weather cooperate!), we have been observing the early season action and scanning the NHTF’s Performance Database to see what stands out.
Our very first thought is, WOW! We are enjoying and appreciative of the fruition of decades of hard work from one Larry Martin! What you all are experiencing is extremely unique in our nation. A single indoor track and field league with 5 different venues, meet directors, and a vast number of volunteers all working together to give thousands of kids opportunities to compete for a full season. While we are all in this together as members of this community, if it wasn’t for Larry Martin and now Amy Sanborn, we would be experiencing much less. So, when you get the chance (this can be difficult because they are so busy), thank the folks (meet management), at all of our venues: UNH, Dartmouth, Plymouth, PEA, and USM, Fulfill your responsibilities as athletes, coaches, and fans, while helping when you see an appropriate opportunity! Allow us to start it off! THANK YOU LARRY MARTIN and the Winter Track and Field League!!!
Below is a simple listing of random thoughts…
Sprinting is off to a decent start with Concord’s Grace Devanny already dropping a 41.09 in the 300 meters. The 55 looks tight as always with Spaulding’s Lauren Noble sitting at the top at 7.62 and Pinkerton’s Amelia Graves, Devanny’s teammate Sarah Waite, and Oyster River’s Devan McClain all posting 7.64s. Graves also has posted a speedy 42.48 300 meter time, so the Devanny and Graves rivalry should heat up as the season progresses.
Speaking of rivalries (friendly of course), pay attention to Oyster River and Hanover sprint crews. Led by McClain and Amelia Concannon (44.14 300m), the Bobcats will be a force once again, especially in the relays. But watch out for Hanover, led by Ella Maclean, as they seem to be the next best in this group of events.
Maybe one of the strongest subgroup of events has to be Division 2’s middle and long distance events! Check out the following early season resumes. Merrimack Valley’s Sophia Reynolds has run 3:11.04 (1k), 4:56.70 (1500) and 10:09.86 (3k). Milford’s Lauren Robinson sits at 3:07.44 (1k), 4:59.41 (1500) and 10:32.26 (3k). This while West’s Corinne Robitaille has run 3:06.14 (1k), 4:56.70 (1500) and, yep, a 44.26 300 meters. Keep your eye on Kearsarge’s Mya Dube as she has run 1:40.55 in the 600 meters and 10:20.87 in the 3k. All four girls have great range and represent several others in Division 2! D1’s Caroline Towle (BG) would fit right in with D2 as she has run 3:11 (1k) and a 10:44 (3k).
In the field events, St. Thomas’s Mady Buchalski chucked an early season bomb in the Shot Put 39’5.5″ while Nashua North’s Olivia Mazerolle soared over 5’5″.
It looks like it will be Pinkerton, led by Graves and Meghan Cross, and Exeter, led by Camille Sweet, Violet Sullivan and Ella Fraser, in the early going battling for D1 supremacy, while Milford, led by Robinson, Robyn Krafft and Renee Wilson has looked strong!
Looking for a strong start? Check out Keene’s Aidan Kindopp ,who blazed the 600 in 1:25.11 while also holding the state’s top 1k time with a 2:36.43. He has come to play. Also out of the gates is Pinkerton’s Joseph Gagnon, who has posted solid times of 4:17.25 (1500) and 9:08.24 (3k). Merrimack Valley’s David Reynolds has the similar 3k time of 9:08.73 and Cody Davis of Lebanon also sits at 4:17.53 in the 1500. But look no further than Concord who made the trek down to Boston University this past Saturday. The usual suspects of Forest MacKenzie and Eli Boesch-Dining blazed to times of 8:57.26 and 9:06.80 in the 3k respectively. The surprise of sorts has to be sophomore Brayden Kearns, who rolled through the mile in 4:35 and change. The conversion of this will be close to a state leader in the 1500. Also watch out for another sophomore stud in Mascenic’s Landen Vaillancourt, who sits as the number 2 D2 seed in both the 1500 and 3k.
Lebanon’s Ryan Sullivan is laying early claim to best track and field athlete in the state as he has a 55 time of 6.71, cleared 6’0″, and leaped 21’1.5″. Leading the dash in the state for NHIAA schools is Windham’s Matthew Garafano with a 6.65. We have to note with appreciation PEA’s Cole Glennon who indeed has the top time of the WTL meets of 6.59. PEA has stepped up big time to allow their facility to be used for more meets this year! Thanks PEA! In the 300, it is Exeter’s Dante Radigonda posting a 37.02 clocking followed closely by Hanover’s Kyle Doucetter’s 37.07. Trinity’s John Thibeault is the other in the 37’s (37.50). Here’s to hoping these three can lock horns somewhere this season!
In the field events, it is no surprise that Londonderry’s Patrick Hagearty has the farthest toss in the Shot Put (47’9.5″). Coe-Brown’s Jon Thorn has the top throw in D2 at 44’4.5″. Bedford’s Lucien Mumpini has the next best jump in the state with a 21’1″ leap.
Teamwise, it is hard to look past Pinkerton in D1, as they seem to have point scorers all over the place. In D2, we are not sleeping on Hanover :), as they are quietly putting together a squad across many events which can score point in bunches. However, Portsmouth boys can also spray points and have the depth to put together relays. It will be quite interesting to see if distance heavy schools like Oyster River and Coe-Brown can put generate contending squads as the season progresses.
Good luck to all!