With the competition at the top of the CNY Counties League National division so heated, the Liverpool boys track and field team knew the importance of Wednesday's meet at Utica Proctor.
Facing a Raider team that had beaten Baldwinsville the week before, the Warriors picked off key points in sprints and field events, then used its domination of distance running as the difference-maker to beat the Raiders 75-65.
Zavon Watkins battled the windy conditions to win the 400-meter dash in 52.4 seconds and the 800-meter run in 2:19.6. In the 4x400 relay, Watkins joined Colin Savage, Alex Wilke and Chris Clemons to prevail in 3:33.6.
Anthony Brais settled in to win both the mile (5:01.2) and 3,200-meter run (11:06.2) as Clemons, Mychal Ostuni, Drew Henry and Anthony Romano needed 10:10.8 to earn first place in the 4x800 relay.
Liverpool also snatched wins in two field events, as Jason Osborne threw the shot put 46 feet 5 inches and Joe Alvarado cleared 10 feet in the shot put. Proctor saw Will Hawkins win the 100-meter dash (10.6 seconds) and Richard Pete take the long jump (21 feet 8 1/2 inches) and triple jump (41 feet 1/2 inch). Jamal Pheance had a discus throw of 130 feet 3 inches.
This served as a warm-up for the Warriors' appearance at Saturday's Chittenango Invitational, where it earned 79 points, second only to Watertown's winning total of 89 points.
Watkins challenged Fayetteville-Manlius star Alex Hatz in the meet's featured event, the Fleet Feet mile. By the third lap, Watkins and Hatz had separated from the rest of the field, but in the late stages Hatz got away, winning in 4:11.51.
Still, Watkins took second place in 4:19.33, while Wilke finished eighth and Savage 13th. Clemons didn't run here, but did help Tony Shuler, Keewan Rondinello and Damien Brown win the 1,600 sprint medley in 3:43.83, topping Jordan-Elbridge by 1.53 seconds.