Scarborough girls win SMAA track title
With their sights firmly set on regaining the Class A state championship that slipped through their grasp a year ago, the Scarborough girls' outdoor track team suggested it's ready to make it four titles in five years after an impressive victory at the SMAA championship meet Saturday in Saco.
The Red Storm had 119 points to outdistance Thornton Academy (86.333) and Cheverus (82). South Portland finished 14th with 7.33 points.
In the boys' competition, won by Cheverus with 106 points, Scarborough came in third with 70, 27 behind runner-up Gorham. South Portland had a solid showing and was fifth with 54 points.
Cape Elizabeth took part in the Western Maine Conference title meet at Yarmouth Saturday. In Division I, the Capers were sixth in the girls' meet with 38 points (York was first with 185) and seventh on the boys' side with 30 points (Falmouth won with 155.5).
Setting the pace
Scarborough's girls won the SMAA title for the second year in row thanks to several stellar performances.
Nicole Kirk was first in the 200 (26.38 seconds). Emelia Scheemaker took the triple jump (34 feet, 4 inches). Christy Manning was tops in the discus (127-4.5). Andrea Tolman captured the pole vault (9 feet). The Red Storm also won the 1,600 relay (4 minutes, 11.37 seconds).
That was just the beginning.
Jenny Snyder was runner-up in the 100 hurdles (16.65) and sixth in the 100 (13.52). Scheemaker placed second in the long jump (16-4.75) and was fifth in the 100 hurdles (17.62). Manning was runner-up in the javelin (121-8) and third in the shot put (36-5.25). Kirk came in third in the 100 (13.15). Catherine Bailey finished third in the pole vault (8 feet). Haela Booth-Howe placed fourth in the javelin (106-3). Emily Tolman was fourth in the long jump (15-10) and fifth in the 800 (2:23.49). Andrea Tolman placed fifth in the 400 (1:03.49).
Scarborough was third in the 400 (51.83) and 3,200 (9:59.47) relays.
"I'm happy with how we did," said Red Storm coach Ron Kelly. "I thought (third place) Cheverus would be a little closer. We did what we had to do. Catherine had a one-foot improvement in the pole vault."
South Portland was led by a trio of freshmen. Cheyenne Coombs tied for fourth in the high jump (5 feet). Nyajock Pan was fifth in the mile (5:22.42). Sophia Desjardins finished sixth in the 200 (27.91). The Red Riots were fifth in the 3,200 relay (10:10.56).
"We had a great meet Saturday," said South Portland coach Bob Zinchuk. "The 4x800 team of Annelise Donahue, Angela Tirabassi, Shelby Miller and Nyajock Pan ran our fastest time in years. We are very excited about the State meet this week and have qualified 13 athletes to compete in 14 events."
In the boys' meet, Scarborough's effort was paced by its 400 (45.14) and 1,600 (3:30.14) first-place relay teams. It's 3,200 squad came in second to Cheverus (9:59.47).
The Red Storm's top individual was Conor Sullivan, who was runner-up in the 400 (52.01) and third in the long jump (19-8.5). Eben Bradley was third in the pole vault (11-6). John Gonzalez placed third in the 100 (11.6) and was fifth in the 200 (23.8). Nick Morris finished fourth in the 800 (2:01.84). Robert Hall placed fourth in the mile (4:39.54). Tom Hague finished fifth in the mile (4:44.09). Orin James was fifth in the 110 hurdles (16.43). Scott Merrill finished fifth in the 400 (52.72).
"I thought we performed well across the board," said Scarborough coach Derek Veilleux. "Winning the relays were what we set out to do and we'll be looking to do the same at the state meet. Another highlight was the second place finish of the 4x800 relay team, which broke the school record. Conor had a strong day. We have someone qualified in every event for the state meet. We are a young team that has progressed over the course of the year"
South Portland got a win from Jamison Esquibel in the 300 hurdles (41.33). Adrian Reid was second in the 100 (11.58) and fourth in the 200 (23.66). Daniel Grazewski finished fourth in the 400 (52.64). Ryan Tuttle placed fourth in the 300 hurdles (43.04). Nicholas Brown finished fourth in the pole vault (11-6). Matthew Clement was sixth in the 800 (2:03.38). Esquibel placed sixth in the 110 hurdles (16.48). Joseph Michaud was sixth in the 400 (52.8). Tom Redstone finished sixth in the racewalk (8:07.63).
The Red Riots were runner-up to Scarborough in both the 400 (45.21) and 1,600 (3:34.53) relays.
Capers go the distance
In Yarmouth, Cape Elizabeth's girls got a win from Rachel Nichols in the mile (5:21.11) and Kelsey Barton in the two-mile (12:05.57).
Skyler Dunfey was runner-up in the triple jump (31-10.75). The Capers were second to York in the 3,200 relay (10:18.9) and fifth in the 1,600 relay (4:33.59).
The boys were paced by Jon Bass' win in the pole vault (12-6). Brenden Shields was second in the triple jump (41-5.25) and fourth in the long jump (19-7.5). Peter Brigham came in fourth in the two-mile (10:28.66). Reid Douty finished fifth in the mile (4:44.29). Cape Elizabeth was fifth in the 1,600 relay (3:53.54).
Scarborough and South Portland will vie for Class A state honors at Cony High School in Augusta. The Red Storm girls hope to win it all once again.
"It won't be as easy as other years," said Kelly, who expects stern tests from Bangor, Cheverus and Edward Little. "We have to perform big. As usual, we'll be head-to-head with Edward Little in a lot of races. It could come down to the 4x400."
On the boys' side, Cheverus is the favorite, but both Scarborough and South Portland figure to be heard from.
"At the state meet, we'll look for our seniors to go out with their best efforts and for the younger guys to learn to perform on the biggest stage," Veilleux said. "We are looking for a top top finish this year. Many of the teams that may finish ahead of us, Cheverus, Gorham, Brunswick, all have a lot of seniors."
Cape Elizabeth will go to Windham for the Class B championships. Falmouth is the boys' favorite. Waterville is viewed as the team to beat on the girls' side.
Sports Editor Michael Hoffer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org