By Sophia Boxerman (News Correspondent).
After securing the Davenport Division title and placing sixth in the Hock Championship meet, the girls’ winter track team is looking forward to continued success in the postseason.Girls’ track fielded the largest indoor team that the school has ever had and peaked in their defeat of Oliver Ames, a rival the team has not beaten in over 20 years.
Coach Alan Conway says that the meet against Oliver Ames was one of the most exciting meets witnessed in a while. “It all came down to the relays. When the 4×400 team won, securing us the win, everyone was celebrating,” he said.
At the Hock Championship meet, the relay teams met success yet again. The 4×400 team of Sydney Mayo, Amanda Brown, Erica Laidler, and Ari Tolay placed 3rd in the meet with a time of 4:14.19, and the 4×800 relay team secured a 6th-place finish with a time of 11:24.78.
The distance team also triumphed with numerous athletes achieving personal records (PRs) at Hocks. Laidler, the first Sharon runner to finish in the 1000 meter race, placed fourth in the race with a PR of 3:12.64. Carly Ryter came in 5th in the mile with a time of 5:40.28, and sophomores Ana Morrison and Maria Gieg earned 6th and 7th place finishes in the two mile with times of 12:25.39 and 12:31.69, respectively.
In the 55-meter dash, captain Morgan Usen secured a 12th placed finish in the varsity prelims with a time of 7.87 seconds, with sophomore Rachel Brandes closely behind, finishing in 7.91 seconds in 15th place. Sophomore Meaghan Connolly and senior Brigid Loftus both finished 10th in the league in their respective races: the 300 meters and the 55-meter hurdles.
In the high jump, freshman Gabrijela Skoko placed 12th, and junior Rachel Goodman placed first for Sharon and 19th in the league for shot put. Three girls qualified for the state meet in the long jump as well.
Coach Phil Gingras says that he was extremely proud of the girls finishing the season 5-0. “We knew that we were returning a lot of strong performers from last year, we had picked up a lot of excellent freshman talent evident from day one, so from the outset of the season we knew that it was a very real possibility to go undefeated,” he said.
“Luckily, through consistent hard work, all of the chips fell in the right places throughout the season. We showed up and performed when it counted,” Gingras added.
Gieg says that winning the Davenport title was an impressive accomplishment for the team. “We’ve been working towards this goal for so many years, and it’s great we could all come together to achieve it,” she said
“In the spring season, I hope to win the Davenport for the third time and beat OA before they join the Kelley Rex division,” Gieg added.
Freshman Dana Jaffe says that she did not really know what to expect her first season of track, but eventually grew to “like the whole team and watching all the other races, building up the anticipation and when we were winning events.”
“It got the whole team excited with everyone cheering for each other,” Jaffe said.
Coach David Roy says that the efforts of all athletes on the team contributed to the their ultimate success. “Everyone worked really hard this season, and I think the proof is in the pudding for how hard they worked because the results show it.”
Sophomore Ari Tolay says that the track team has gotten a lot closer since last year, and the strong team dynamic made it possible for the athletes to succeed. “Winning the Davenport title this year was huge accomplishment for us because we worked together as a group, and just being able to do that means a lot,” Tolay said.
With a time of 1:39.26, Tolay finished first in the league for the 600 at Hock Championships and says that she looks forward to competing in the upcoming Division III state meet and facing Bishop Feehan, “one of the biggest competitors.”
Gingras says that going into the postseason, “our goals are to score as many points at a very tough state meet, so we’ll see how that goes, but we’re in a very good position.”