Junior Paige Hunt clears a height in the pole vault while Senior Captain Katie Robbins coaches her from the side. Both vaulters cleared 8 feet in the opening meet to score first place as a relay and help the Lakers to a second-place finish overall on Dec 8. (submitted photo)
By Kurt Wheeler
Girls indoor track coach
The Cazenovia girls indoor track team opened their 2017-18 campaign with a strong performance at the DiMao Invitational hosted by Colgate University on Dec 8. The Lakers scored 102 points to place second in the ten team Division II field, as Clinton edged them with 114 points in the “relay” format meet which combines the performances of the top two athletes in each event for scoring.
The Lakers had a well-balanced attack, scoring in the top four in every event, but were especially strong in the field events as they won the pole vault, long jump and triple jump relays. Senior Captain Katie Robbins and Paige Hunt each cleared 8 feet in their opening competition to partner for first in the pole vault. Maddie Gavitt led the way in the triple jump as she led the entire field at 33-8.75 and partnered with Ava Gavitt (25-5.25) to win as a relay. She also chipped in a 14-.5 effort in the long jump to team up with Chloe Smith (14-10.75) for first in the that event.
Savannah Conway, Lili Gavitt and Claire Edwards all cleared personal bests of 4-3 in the high jump to place fourth in that event. Edwards (24-8.5) also paced the throwers as she partnered with Kenzie Yates (24-4.75) to earn second in the shot put. Sunday Kulang (25-11) and Eva Salzman (24-5) earned third as a duo in the weight throw to round out the Lakers’ success in the field events.
Senior Captain Meggie Hart led the way for Cazenovia on the track, turning in three superb distance races to pace the team. She opened with a 4:59.90 effort in the 1500, partnering with Maddie McGreevy (6:04.14) to capture fourth as a relay. Later in the meet she added a 2:30.51 effort in the 800 to earn second with Savannah Conway (3:02.72). She also ran the anchor leg of the Lakers’ Distance Medley Relay, covering the 1600 meters in 5:36 as the team of Hannorah Race, Grace Rajkowski and McGreevy earned third place in 14:39.44.
Chloe Smith led the sprinters, running an outstanding early-season 55-meter dash of 7.79 (state qualifier meet standard) to combine with Paige Hunt (8.41) for second place. She also anchored the Lakers’ second place 4×200 meter relay with a 28.5 second leg. Senior Captain Brenna Hughes (28.4) led off with Paige Hunt and Taylor Tilison running the middle legs for a 1:59.48 total. Rajkowski and Race partnered for fourth in the 500-meter run while Scout Mueller and Shea Flannery earned second in the 55-meter hurdle relay. The 4×400 meter relay team of Peyton Basic, Katrina Wilson, Meg Seeley and Kaitlyn Puffer earned fourth in a time of 4:35.57.
The Lakers will return to action on Dec 19 at Colgate as they seek to make adjustments to take full advantage of their 40-athlete line-up in pursuit of their eighth consecutive OHSL and Section 3 titles this season.
Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican and Eagle Bulletin newspapers.