By Mike Smith
Sprints & Hurdles
Janiah Young of Stevens leads all sprinters in both the 100 and 200. Kyla Eagbroadt of Fall Mountain is #2 in the 200, #3 in the 100 and is looking to challenge. Last year’s champion Abby Drew of Conant is in the 100 looking to defend and her sister, Haylie Drew is looking to defend her title in the 200. Add in the Gilford sprint crew and Syler Tautkus of Laconia and you’ve got some solid competition in those races. Natalie Fraser of Gilford is the top seed in the 400, with Tautkus and Avril Prak of Kearsarge in the #2 and #3 positions.
White Mountain’s Taima Ronish is the top seed in the 100 hurdles while Newport’s Eliza Bates is the top seed in the 300 hurdles. Campbell’s Tori Allen is the #2 seed behind both and Bates is the #4 seed in the 100 Hurdles. Kearsarge’s Kate Cochran and Belmont’s Sana Syed with contest both hurdle events as well.
Kearsarge’s Mya Dube ran a herculean 4:56 solo effort last weekend to become NH’s #1 in the 1600. This weekend she looks to do one better by tripling in the 1600, 800 and 3200 (and possibly a leg on the 4×400!) in an effort to snag 30+ points towards helping her team win the team title. She’ll face PCA’s Liza Corso and Campbell’s Cassie Hemming in the 1600 and 800 and White Mountain’s Blayne Lachance in the 800. Distance stalwarts Belmont’s Alice Riley, InterLakes Maya Weil-Cooley and Kearsarge’s Lili Baer will contend in the 1600 and 3200.
InterLakes Emma Wheeler will have a busy day jumping as the #1 seed in the triple jump and pole vault, and #2 seed in both the long jump and high jump. Defending champion Abby Drew will look to retain her title, a one inch seed mark ahead of the competition. Hurdler Tori Allen is looking to defend her HJ title against Wheeler as well with both athletes having cleared 5-0 this season. Ronish will be looking to upset Wheeler in the triple as the second best jumper this spring, the only athlete within a foot of the lead. White Mountain’s Abby Friedman is the only athlete within 4 inches of Wheeler in the pole vault.
The Newfound throwing squad is head and shoulders above the competition in the shot put with Ashlee Dukette, Oceanne Skoog and Paulina Huckins the top three seeds with almost a FOUR FOOT advantage over the rest of the field. Dukette’s back in the javelin and Skoog back in the disc but shot is where it’s at for the Newfound crew. Amelia Wilson of Mascoma leads the jav field over Anya Cunningham of Raymond by more than a foot while Hannah Blackburn of Winnisquam leads Natalie Guitard of Berlin by almost four feet in the discus.
Last year, Gilford won both the 4×100 and the 4×400 but this year return as the #2 and #3 seeds in those events. Stevens leads the 4×100, with Gilford and Belmont in the #2 and #3 slots. Kearsarge (anchored by Dube) is in the top slot with Hopkinton and Gilford in the #2 and #3 spots. Last year PCA came within a second of setting the D3 record of 9:59 in the 4×800 and are the top seed this year by 15 seconds over Hopkinton with Gilford rolling in third.
Sprints & Hurdles
JJ Davis of Kearsarge and John Thibault of Trinity are the top seeds in the 100 and 200. The 100 sees Hillsborough Deering’s Ben Ketterer and Newport’s Mason Martell in the #2 and #3 slots while the 200 has InterLake’s Eli Dupigny and Winnisquam’s Hunter Hinxman in those positions. Davis returns in the 400 as the #2 seed with Monadnock’s multi-distance ace Harry Ryan in the top spot. Kearsarge’s Ed Stowell should have a strong race should he keep it between the lines on this one.
Newport’s Martell will be contesting both the 100 and the 110 hurdles, where in the 110h, he is the top seed. He also is the top seed in the 300 hurdles behind teammate Jagger Lovely (somebody into the Rolling Stones perhaps?) Somersworth’s Jason Suwu is the #2 seed in both hurdle events.
Mid D/ Distance
Zach Ennis qualified for D3s in everything from the 400 to the 3200, but has elected to go for team points, running the 1600 and 800, as well as running a leg on the # 3 ranked 4×400 team. Jeffrey Allen qualified in the same (AND in pole vault) and is electing to do the triple, 1600, 800 and 3200 (plus the 4×4 most likely.) The battle between those two in those two races should be epic as they both have solid seed times, run powerfully and are quick to finish. Stowell will be doubling back and looking to make the pass on the second lap.
Landen Vaillancourt of Mascenic is the top seed in the 3200, after electing not to contest the 1600. He could be in the driver’s seat if Allen gets pushed to the limit before. But teammate Logan Thibault has had a spectacular season thus far, and he, Trinity’s Danny Donovan and Fall Mountains George Gowdy should be in the mix as well.
White Mountain’s Jack Parker is the top seed in both vertical jumps. In the Pole vault he’s a 3 ½ foot seed over Wyatt Lord of Fall Mountain and a 2 inch seed over Newfound’s Reid Wilkins and Kearsarge’s Ben Corbyn. InterLake’s Owen Billin is the top seed in the triple jump while his teammate Eli Dupigny is the top seed in the long jump. Billins will be pursued by H-D’s Ben Ketterer and Trinity’s Jack Hudson as the over 40 ft jumpers. Dupigny will be challenged by Ketterer and White Mountain’s Kevin Schanlaber, and teammate Mykyle Merrill as the over 20 ft crew.
Wilton Lyndeborough’s Samuel Bailey leads all throwers in the shot put and is the #2 seed in the javelin and the disc. Campbell’s Joshua Hoffman leads the division AND THE STATE in the discus, so he is the favorite. Somersworth Brogan Bonsaint leads all jav throwers by 17+ feet and is the favorite there.
Trinity has the top seeds in the 4×100 and 4×400, chased by Kearsarge and Newport in the 4×1; while Belmont and InterLakes will be their pursuers in the 4×4. Looking at their entries in the individual events, it looks like Trinity is loading the 4×800 as well, possibly taking all three relay events. However Mascenic (#1) and Winnisquam (#2) waged a solid battle last week at Wilderness and have an eleven second advantage on Trinity. It’s rumured that Jeffrey Allen will be anchoring the #4 Campbell team in the 4×400, where the entire field will be running on tired legs, so don’t count them out either.
Last year, the Spartans of White Mountains put up 59 points to beat Gilford by 9. Campbell was right behind Gilford, half a point from sharing second place. Mya Dube tripling (quadrupling if she runs the 4×4) shows Kearsarge wants in on the action as well. Newfound should make some noise with potentially 24 points alone in the shot put. And keep an eye on Hopkinton, which only scored 14 points last year, but won D3 cross handily this fall, to make inroads towards the top spot.
On the men’s side, Campbell beat out InterLakes for the top spot, 71 to 64. Both teams do a really good job figuring out how to steal points here and there so it should be interesting. Kearsarge tends to be good doing the same, but seems to be a little thin in some of their main events. Also be wary of the Belmont Red Raiders and their diversity in scoring, with points coming in some of the lesser placings along with a good day from Zach Ennis, they could be in the mix as well.
Good luck to everyone!!!!