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Liverpool, C-NS track stars advance to state meet

Vanmarter, Akinpelu, Girardi, Austen, Herringshaw earn wins

— Mark Vanmarter, Ore Akinpelu, Morgan Austen and Pete Girardi have all secured spots in next weekend’s state track and field championship meet at Bragman Stadium, with a chance at contending for medals.

All of them earned impressive victories during Thursday’s Section III state qualifier on the same Cicero-North Syracuse oval where the state meet will take place.

From Liverpool, Vanmarter dominated in the long jump, going 22 feet 10 ½ inches to finish more than two feet ahead of Baldwinsville’s Dante Giannino (20’7”), and then in the triple jump Vanmarter went 43’11 ¾”, with Jamesville-DeWitt’s Dylan Volk (42’11 ½”) behind him.

Akinpelu gave the Warriors a victory in her specialty, the 400-meter hurdles, pulling away but still saving her top speed for the state meet as she won in one minute, 3.99 seconds, with Indian River’s Emma Bonk (1:06.85) nearly three seconds behind her.

From the C-NS side, Girardi swept the hurdles events. In the 110 high hurdles, he finished in 15.35 seconds, with East Syracuse-Minoa’s Jeremy McGrath second (13:91 seconds), more than half a second behind, and he outdueled Fayetteville-Manlius star Kyle Barber in the 400-meter hurdles, getting a time of 54.76 seconds to Barber’s 55.23.

Austen took part in the five-event pentathlon and traded the lead with Watertown’s Matt Olney before emerging with the victory as he got 3,231 points, just ahead of Olney’s 3,188 points, though both will go to the state meet.

C-NS gained one other victory – in the girls high jump, where Nicole Herringshaw cleared 5’2” and beat the two favorites, Emily Soeder (Baldwinsville) and Nina Zesky (East Syracuse-Minoa), neither o whom could top 5 feet.

Connor Buck, Dan Muldoon, Alex Christensen and Nick LeClair were second in the 4x800 relay in 7:46.90, just behind F-M’s 7:44.93 as C-NS, with the quartet of Andrew Bearkland, Paul DeGennaro, Bryan Bausinger and Eric Bowen in fourth place in 8:08.82.

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