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Danbury boys, Staples girls top Class LL track; Pierre, DeBalsi, Howlett break meet records

Westhill's Claire Howlett and Staples' Hannah DeBalsi, shown competing in the 1,600 at the FCIAC finals, had big meets during Saturday's Class LL finals in New Haven. DeBalsi won the 3,200 with Howlett second, while Howlett won the 1,600 with DeBalsi second. All four times beat the old Class LL marks in those events. (Fred Gaston Photo)

Westhill’s Claire Howlett and Staples’ Hannah DeBalsi, shown competing in the 1,600 at the FCIAC finals, had big meets during Saturday’s Class LL finals in New Haven. DeBalsi won the 3,200 with Howlett second, while Howlett won the 1,600 with DeBalsi second. All four times beat the old Class LL marks in those events. (Fred Gaston Photo)

NEW HAVEN – It was quite an impressive feat by the FCIAC in that all four of the team champions in the two largest classes – two boys’ meets and two girls’ meets – were FCIAC teams in the recent state class indoor track and field championship meets.

The Danbury boys and Staples girls won the team titles at the CIAC Class LL Indoor Track and Field Championships on Saturday at the Floyd Little Athletic Center.

Those championships came just two days after Darien’s boys’ and girls’ teams won their respective meets at the Class L Indoor Track and Field Championships on Thursday.

The victories gave the FCIAC four state championships, with several teams in contention for State Open titles next weekend.

Danbury nipped fellow conference member Ridgefield by just three points to win the boys’ Class LL championship. The Hatters scored 64 points and Ridgefield’s Tigers had 61.

The top four teams and five of the top six teams were from the FCIAC. Staples placed third with 45 points, Brien McMahon was fourth with 34 and Greenwich placed sixth with 25. Other FCIAC finishers included Norwalk (15) in 11th place, Trumbull (12) in 13th, Westhill (10) in 17th, and Stamford (4) in 23rd.

Chaz Winter won the 600-meter run with a time of 1:25.11 to help lead the Hatters to their ninth state class championship since 2001.

Also contributing for Danbury in individual events, Mike Morrow in the high jump (6 feet), Leland Roberts in the pole vault (12 feet) and Akim Moffett in the 55-meter hurdles (7.85) all placed second while Mickey Kozak placed third in the 1,000 (2:37.23).

The Hatters also scored a combined 24 points when their relay teams placed second in the 4×400 and the 1,600 sprint medley, third in the 4×800 and fifth in the 4×200.

Perhaps the most exciting event in the meet was the 55-meter dash. Brien McMahon senior Shnyden Pierre and Greenwich junior Austin Longo were co-champions as they tied for first with their identical, “dead heat” times of 6.61. Pierre racked up 19 individual points as he also won the 300 with a 35.16.

Westhill’s Chris Rough vaulted 14 feet to win the pole vault.

Anthony Bravo of Staples won the long jump (21-1.5). Greenwich’s Stephan DeCarlo was just behind Bravo (20-9.25) in second place.

Staples received runner-up finishes in individual events from Peter Elkind in the 1,000 (2:35.86) and Oliver Hickson in the 1,600 (4:23.28).

Ridgefield’s Austin Gilbert was runner-up in the 3,200 (9:29.08) and teammate Gabriel Altopp (9:29.52) was just behind him in third place as that pair of Tigers led a group of eight FCIAC runners who finished among the top 10.

Evan Adams of Norwalk placed second in the shot put (49-6).

Ridgefield was victorious in the 4×400, 4×800 and 1,600 sprint medley relays and McMahon won the 4×200 relay.

The Staples girls were led by their superb sophomore distance runner, Hannah DeBalsi, who racked up 18 of their 63 points to help them finish eight points ahead of team runner-up Simsbury.

The FCIAC placed four more teams in the top 10 with Ridgefield (27 points) seventh, McMahon (26) eighth, and Danbury and Westhill (20 each) tied for ninth. Also for the FCIAC, Ludlowe (17) was 12th, Trumbull (12) was 14th, Greenwich and Norwalk (11 each) were 17th, and Stamford (5) was 20th.

DeBalsi and Westhill senior Claire Howlett continued their great rivalry in which they push and pull each other to supreme performances as they each had a victory and a runner-up finish against each other and both of them broke meet records in both of the two longest distance events.

Howlett won the 1,600 with a 4:55.36, DeBalsi placed second with a 4:56.08 and they easily broke the old meet record of 5:00.38 that Glastonbury’s Lindsay Crevoiserat set in 2011. DeBalsi later won the 3,200 in 10:19.26, more than 25 seconds faster than the old meet record of 10:44.57 that she set last year. Howlett also broke that record with her runner-up time of 10:32.28.

Brien McMahon senior Sarah Boyd was a double champion – winning the 55 dash (7.43) and 55 hurdles (8.51).

FCIAC athletes combined to win six of the seven individual running events.

Ridgefield senior Laura Hergenrother had an excellent day as she won the 1,000 in 2:58.99 and placed fourth in the 1,600 (5:17.31). Ridgefield’s Rachel Moroknek placed second in the pole vault (10-6).

Tyler Scanlin of Staples won the 600 (1:36.24). Also for Staples, Erica Hefnawy in the 1,000 (3:04.37) and Bridget van Dorsten in the high jump (5-0) both had runner-up finishes.

• Click here for the complete results •

Here are the FCIAC’s top six finishers in each event:

Boys Results

55 Meter Dash

1T. Shnyden Pierre, McMahon, 6.61

1T. Austin Longi, Greenwich, 6.61

5. Niko Petridis, McMahon, 6.75

300 Meter Dash

1. Shnyden Pierre, McMahon, 35.16*

*Pierre’s time broke the old Class LL record of 35.30, set by Ridgefield’s Austin Von Ohlsen in 2009

6. Niko Petridis, McMahon, 37.01

600 Meter Run

1. Chaz Winter, Danbury, 1:25.11

3. Joseph Matera, Trumbull, 1:26.71

5. Victor Kolbin, Staples, 1:27.88

1,000 Meter Run

2. Peter Elkind, Staples, 2:35.86

3. Mickey Kozak, Danbury, 2:37.23

1,600 Meter Run

2. Oliver Hickson, Staples, 4:23.28

3. William Bordash, Ridgefield, 4:24.99

4. Trevor Hopper, Ridgefield, 4:26.20

6. Thomas Guillaume, Ridgefield, 4:35.21

3,200 Meter Run

2. Austin Gilbert, Ridgefield, 9:29.08

3. Gabriel Altopp, Ridgefield, 9:29.52

4. Trevor Hopper, Ridgefield, 9:32.28

5. Eric Van der Els, McMahon, 9:32.75

55 Meter Hurdles

2. Akim Moffett, Danbury, 7.85

4. Franklin Bartley, Jr., Norwalk, 7.89

6. Robert Jacowleff, Staples, 8.06

4×200 Meter Relay

1. McMahonn (Justin Frederick, Yvens Borno, Niko Petridis, Shnyden Pierre), 1:34.44

5. Danbury (Matthew Andrew, Cyrus Brown, Devonte Clarke, Akim Moffett), 1:36.97

4×400 Meter Relay

1. Ridgefield (James Barile, Thomas Guillaume, Graeme Hewett, Johnathan Keating), 3:31.60

2. Danbury (Tyrice O’Connor, Jonathan Bartley, Taylor Williams, Chaz Winter), 3:32.09

3. Trumbull (Tyler Gleen, Neil Barrow, Dylan McEniry, Joseph Matera), 3:35.53

5. Staples (Robert Jacowleff, James Lewis, Victor Kolbin, Peter Elkind), 3:36.35

4×800 Meter Relay

1. Ridgefield (Ethan Realander, Johnathan Keating, Kristian Sogaard, Austin Gilbert), 8:18.97

2. Staples (James Lewis, William McDonald, Luis Cruz, Victor Kolbin), 8:19.22

3. Danbury (Matt Edgar, Corey Mullins, Taylor Williams, Jake Roberts), 8:25.74

4. Greenwich (Spencer Helmrich, Sean Clarke, Mark Jarombek, Sebastian Oe), 8:29.15

1,600 Sprint Medley

1. Ridgefield (Andrew Franco, Evan Bloch, James Barile, Graeme Hewett), 3:40.98

2. Danbury (Matthew Andrew, Akim Moffett, Jonathan Bartley, Mickey Kozak), 3:41.84

4. Staples (Robert Jacowleff, Andrew Floyd, Luis Cruz, Peter Elkind), 3:42.83

5. Norwalk (Hopeton Chambers, Franklin Bartley Jr., Tayquan Camacho, Ezzy Rodriguez), 3:45.90

High Jump

2. Mike Morrow, Danbury, J6-00

5. Anthony Bravo, Staples, 5-08

Pole Vault

1. Christopher Rough, Westhill, 14-00

2. Leland Roberts, Danbury, 12-00

4. Thomas Chessman, Greenwich, 11-06

5T. William Nolan, Staples, 11-00

5T. Phat Thach, Danbury, 11-00

Long Jump

1. Anthony Bravo, Staples, 21-01.50

2. Stephan DeCarlo, Greenwich, 20-09.25

4. Phil Szostek, Stamford, 20-04.50

Shot Put

2. Evan Adams, Norwalk, 49-06

5. Lucas Goff, Ridgefield, 46-00.50

6. Corey Barrett, Norwalk, 44-11.50

Girls Results

55 Meter Dash

1. Sarah Boyd, McMahon, 7.43

3. Niema Riley, Danbury, 7.49

4. Tamia Taylor, Norwalk, 7.51

300 Meter Dash

3. Emma Koether, Fairfield Ludlowe, 42.45

4. Katie Foley, Trumbull, 42.71

5. Rachel Hurst, Fairfield Ludlowe, 43.41

600 Meter Run

1. Tyler Scanlin, Staples, 1:36.24

2. Katie Foley, Trumbull, 1:36.28

3. Claire Turner, Norwalk, 1:38.43

1,000 Meter Run

1. Laura Hergenrother, Ridgefield, 2:58.99

2. Erica Hefnawy, Staples, 3:04.37

6. Ericka Randazzo, Westhill, 3:11.90

1,600 Meter Run

1. Claire Howlett, Westhill, 4:55.36*

2. Hannah DeBalsi, Staples, 4:56.08*

*Both times beat the old Class LL record of 5:00.38, set by Glastonbury’s Lindsay Crevoiserat in 2011

4. Laura Hergenrother, Ridgefield, 5:17.31

3,200 Meter Run

1. Hannah DeBalsi, Staples, 10:19.26*

2. Claire Howlett, Westhill, 10:32.28*

*Both times beat the old Class LL record of 10:44.57, set by Staples’ Hannah DeBalsi last year

55 Meter Hurdles

1. Sarah Boyd, McMahon, 8.51

3. Alex Wykoff, Fairfield Ludlowe, 8.86

6. Tamia Taylor, Norwalk, J9.01

4×200 Meter Relay

1. Danbury (Jay’Yona Torres, Najmah James, Bridget Chiaravalle, Niema Riley), 1:47.83

6. Fairfield Ludlowe (Rachel Hurst, Alison Gorab, Ali Johnson, Emma Koether), 1:50.65

4×400 Meter Relay

4. Staples (Olivia Wiener, Brynly Marsh, Erica Hefnawy, Tyler Scanlin), 4:11.22

5. Greenwich (Erica Hvolbeck, Caroline Frey, Jenny Goggin, Anna Black), 4:12.31

4×800 Meter Relay

4. Ridgefield (Hannah Mercorella, Kelsey Bordash, Haley Greene, Hannah Fleming), 10:05.78

5. Greenwich (Mia Bonanno, Daryl Kennedy, Jenny Goggin, Amy Wyle), 10:09.86

1,600 Sprint Medley

1. Staples (Sarah Neckritz, Kathryn Lieder, Olivia Wiener, Tyler Scanlin), 4:20.31

4. Danbury (Jay’Yona Torres, Niema Riley, Bridget Chiaravalle, Sarah Krate), 4:22.40

6. Greenwich (Emma Slagle, Anna Giannuzzi, Anna Black, Jenny Goggin), 4:26.35

High Jump

2. Bridget van Dorsten, Staples, J5-00

3T. Jessica Stietzel, Stamford, 4-10

3T. Reece Schachne, Staples, 4-10

5. Emily O’Keefe, Fairfield Ludlowe, J4-10

6. Sofie Sogaard, Ridgefield, 4-08

Pole Vault

2. Rachel Moroknek, Ridgefield, 10-06

Long Jump

3. Sarah Boyd, McMahon, 16-08.75

Shot Put

3. Sarah Cicchetti, Greenwich, 34-02.50

6. Danielle Leffand, Westhill, 31-02


Darien wins two titles at Class L meet – For more details, click here

The Darien girls won Thursday’s Class L meet in impressive fashion as they racked up 87 points, 22 more than runner-up Wilbur Cross.

Anna Sulger and Catherine Lacy excelled yet again as they were both double champions in individual events to lead the Blue Wave. Sulger won the 300 dash (40.63) and 600 run (1:37.32). Lacy was victorious in the long jump (17-7) and high jump (5-0).

Madeleine Schneide (11-0) and Jessica Thornbury (10-6) swept the top two places in the pole vault for Darien. Taylor McDonald placed third in the shot put (36-6) for the Blue Wave. Darien also won the 4×200 relay.

Cate Allen of Fairfield Warde had a great meet as she placed second in the 1,600 (4:57.4) and 3,200 (10:59.96) and broke the previous meet records in both events.

Laine Parsons of Wilton was runner-up in the 600 (1:40.45). Wilton won the 4×800 relay and placed third in the 4×400 relay. The Warriors placed fourth in the team scoring with 43 points.

Darien’s boys did their part to contribute to the school’s Class L championship sweep on Thursday as they captured their crown with 72 points to nip runner-up Windsor by four points.

Nick Lombardo led the way for the champions as the meet’s only double champion in individual events. Lombardo won the high jump (6-5) by a comfortable three inches and he also won the long jump (21-5.25).

The Blue Wave made a pivotal surge late in the meet by scoring 20 team points in the 3,200 when Alex Ostberg (9:21.83) and Marshall Huffman (9:41.71) went 1-2 and Armstrong Noonan (9:48.11) was fifth. Noonan had earlier placed third in the 1,600 (4:29.54).

Spencer McKeough was also an individual champ for the Blue Wave, winning the shot put (48-11). Darien also won the 4×800 relay with an 8:23.28.

Austin Deery won the 300 (36.33) for New Canaan, the second highest scoring team from the FCIAC and tied for sixth overall with 27 points.

Spencer Brown ran away from his competitors and won the 1,000 by more than four seconds with a 2:33.33 to lead Wilton, which placed eighth with 26 points. The Warriors also won the 1,600 sprint medley relay (3:43.03).

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