Cicero Cazenovia boys track and field star Walker Nichols got within 17 points of advancing to this weekend’s state championship meet in the pentathlon.
Nichols, a junior, and Altmar-Parish-Williamstown sophomore Sage Bartlett waged a classic duel for Division II (small school) honors in Thursday’s Section III state qualifier at Cicero-North Syracuse’s Bragman Stadium, the same venue that will host the state meet.
Starting out in the 110 high hurdles, Nichols went 16.46 seconds to Bartlett’s 16.64, only to see Bartlett take the lead in the high jump. During the shot put and long jump, Nichols jumped far ahead, and went to the 1,500-meter run nursing a 2,493-2,229 lead.
Going all out in an event that is not his strength, Nichols posted a time of 5:24.58 in the 1,500, but Bartlett finished in 4:35.85, the fastest time in either division, and got 707 points, giving him 2,936 overall, just ahead of Nichols, who posted 2,919 points.
Of course, Nichols was just one of many Cazenovia athletes that were part of the state qualifier, including Ashley Kent, who finished third in the Division II triple jump with a top attempt of 34 feet 8 inches, with Remsen’s Alycia Atwell-Chwazik the winner with 36’2 ¾”.
Kent was also fourth in the Division II 100-meter hurdles in 16.91 seconds, where Pulaski’s Breann Burns, a state meet favorite bound for the University of Rhode Island, won in 14.45 seconds.
As for Liz Pittman, she contended in the pole vault, clearing 9 feet, which tied her for second with West Canada Valley’s Abigail Esty behind Clinton’s Hannah Shankman, the only contender to clear 9’6” in this event.
The girls Lakers’ 4x800 relay team, composed of Jeanette Cudney, Colleen Stalder, Maria Stalder and Malone Gabor, finished in a time of 9:49.39, third among Division II sides, with Homer taking the top spot in 9:38.86. Jessica Macheda got 12th place in the long jump, going 15’2”.
Sean Satchwell made a big push in the boys Division II 800-meter run, getting to third place in 2:03.07, with CBA’s Jack Brower prevailing in 1:57.61. Ryan O’Herien, Tom McNearney, Dan McKillop and Alec Boone were sixth in the 4x100 relay in 47.86 seconds.