SYRACUSE High school indoor track and field is now underway, and it didn't take long for Fayetteville-Manlius and Jamesville-DeWitt to make serious pushes toward the top of the standings during Wednesday night's Jack Morse Holiday Relays at SRC Arena.
In fact, the Hornets almost finished on top, picking up 51.5 points, which beat everyone except Cicero-North Syracuse, who took the top spot with 55 points. J-D, with 43 points, got to fourth place, just behind Liverpool's third-place total of 48 points.
Twice, F-M beat out Liverpool in relay races. During the 4x400, the Hornets' quartet of Hamza ElHabbal, Josh Hannan, Adam Rahim and Dan Slatterly posted a time of three minutes, 43.49 seconds, well clear of the runner-up Warriors, who got second place in 3:52.90.
Then, in the 1,600 sprint medley, ElHabbal returned, this time with Ed Cheatham, Kyle Harbour and Luke Jordan, in a much closer race, but again the Hornets finished on top with a time of 3:51.17, barely a second ahead of Liverpool's 3:52.18.
Jon Abbott, Sean Donlon, Nick Sischo and Vincent Perry worked together in the 4x800 relay, where F-M was second in 9:05.47, well off West Genesee's winning effort of 9:05.47. J-D's quartet of Austin Philleo, Patrick Dye, Tom Iandolo and Nick Salbert was fifth in 9:44.93.
Zach Liebmann starred for J-D, especially in the pole vault, where he cleared 13 feet for top individual honors and won the team event with Rob Murphy, who cleared 9 feet. He also was third among individuals in the 55-meter dash in 6.90 seconds, combining with Will Cote for fifth place.
Later in the meet, Liebmann and Cote went a combined 38'3 1/2" in the long jump and got second place, with Liverpool's duo of Mark Vanmarter and Ryheim Lawes (40'10") going to the top. Harbour and Ben Testani put F-M (37'3 1/4") in third place.