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2023 NHIAA Division 1 State Indoor Championship PREVIEW

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By Nate Leveille

Finally the D1 Indoor state meet is back!  Now that we have a clear picture of what events athletes will be competing in at the championships. Let’s get to the D1 preview.


Exeter, Concord, Pinkerton, and North were all separated by a few points at the spring championships.  Exeter and North lost major02 05 23 WTL meet-092 point scorers to graduation leaving Pinkerton and Concord as the pre-season favorites.  Then Bedford entered the picture with arguably the best runner in the state and South with their dominant sprint squad.  Pinkerton looks poised to run away with the team title on paper with more than a 40 point edge over predicted 2nd place finisher Concord.  South, Bedford, and Dover all have big point scorers making the race for second an interesting one.


The girls 55 meter dash might be the deepest and best in the history of the state with the top 7 girls all under 7.6 seconds.  Alexis Best of Merrimack has the top seed of 7.33 seconds with Soraya Ross of Nashua South the two seed at 7.37.  Those top both have the ability to break the D1 record.  The girls 55 hurdles has gone back and forth all season between Jordan Wheaton of Pinkerton (8.37) and 02 05 23 WTL meet-037Anika Scott of Bedford (8.41).  This should be a fantastic two way battle.  Bedford had a difficult decision to make with freshman Mikita Barry.  She was the top seed in the 300-600-1000-1500.  She opted to run the 300 making that race absolutely loaded. She enters as the top seed in 42.02 with Hannah Sippel of Pinkerton 42.4 as the two seed followed by Best, Harriet Barber (outdoor 400m champ), and Ross.  This might be the race of the day.

MIddle Distance/ Distance

The 600m is one of the more wide open events on the meet.  The top 6 girls are all separated by less than 2 seconds.  Meadow Gregory of Exeter is the top seed followed by Anique Poulin of Dover.  In the 1000m Dover’s distance star Isabel McIntyre is the top seed (3:04.05) followed by Isabelle Groulx of Pinkerton (3:07.76).  McIntyre of Dover returns in the 1500m as the top seed followed by two Pinkerton02 05 23 WTL meet-190 athletes, Groulx and Contessa Silva.  In the 3000, its Silva of Pinkerton as the top seed followed by outdoor 3200 meter champ Shelly Smith of Concord.


The high jump is loaded this year with the top 6 seeds all over 5ft.  The top see is Wheaton of Pinkerton followed by Ella Goulas and Kelley Mickelson of Concord.  This event will have major implications for the team race.  In the long jump is Scott of Bedford as the top seed and only girl over 18ft.  She is followed by Goulas of Concord and Iyana Braswell of Nashua South.  In the shot put its Briana Danis of Pinkerton and Madelyn Novak of Nashua North.  Both ladies have lots of big meet experience and championships making this 02 05 23 WTL meet-153event a good one to tune in to.


It’s always difficult to figure out what teams will do in the 4×800.  Pinkerton seems poised to take this event with their distance, depth and star power.  If they don’t decide to enter an A team then Dover, Alvirne or Portsmouth could get in the mix.  In the 4×400 Pinkerton, Exeter and Bedford are all separated by less than 1 second in which should be an excellent 3 way battle.  Look out for Concord who is lurking a few seconds back.  Portsmouth dropped a sub 1:50 in the 4×200 last week at PEA they will look to continue the momentum as they face off against top seeds Pinkerton Academy and Nashua South.  Handoffs will be the key in this one as those teams should be very packed as they ended the zones.


The team race looks like a two team battle up front with a few other schools with the potential for a top 2 finish if either of the02 05 23 WTL meet-095 favorites were to falter.  Pinkerton is the team to beat on paper with a 15-20 point cushion over Bedford.  Pinkerton is projected to score in almost all events with the most athletes entered in the meet.  Bedford is relying on solid relays, Jacob Redman and a bunch of hurdle points.  Lurking as potential top two teams are Portsmouth, Nashua South, and Exeter.  


AJ Sebastien of Memorial enters the dash as the top seed (6.62).  He is followed closely by Chris Stevens of Keene (6.63).  Key points up for grabs in this event as Pinkerton has the 4-5 seeds in Matt Morrison and Caden Michaud.  In the 300 meters, top seed Kevin Brooks of Windham is undefeated and untested on the year.  He will be challenged by Stevens of Keene and Caden Mourgenos of Dover.  The 55m hurdles will be one of the more important events of the morning.  Christopher Chong of Bedford is the top seed; he is followed by Morrison of Pinkerton and teammate JJ Powers of Bedford.  Those three have separated themselves from the field and Bedford is projected to score a massive 17 points in PEA0204-678.jpgthe event.

Middle Distance/ Distance

Sean Clegg of Londonderry is the top seed in the 600m with a time of 1:22.40.  I believe he has run slightly faster down in Boston this winter which means he has a shot at the D1 record set back in 2020.  He is followed by two seed Tyler Safstrom of Merrimack and a slew of Pinkerton athletes. The 1000 might be the race of the meet on the boys side.  In a bit of a surprise Jacob Redman of Bedford opted for the 1000 over the 3000-1500 double, which is great for those of us watching the meet.  He is joined by top seed Avery Crowell of Portsmouth, Gavin Malark of Exeter and Jake Haley of Portsmouth.  There could be as many as 6 guys under 2:40!  In the 1500 Redman is the top seed followed by what could be a “fresh” Matt Allen of Exeter.  The 1500 is always the “who has anything left in their legs” race at that time in the meet which just about everyone doubling or tripling back.  The 3000 should be a good tactical race between top seed Matthew Giardina of BG and Ryan Fortin of Londonderry.

Relays02 05 23 WTL meet-121

There are waves that some of the distance big guns could square off in the 4×800.  With Pinkerton, Bedford, Exeter, and Portsmouth all eyeing a top 2 team finish there are some much needed points up for grabs.  Pinkerton has quite the edge on paper but both Portsmouth and Exeter have the firepower to challenge.  The same crews are the top seed in the 4×400 with Pinkerton having the clear edge here as their athletes should have less races under their belt at this stage of the meet.  Exeter is the two seed and Portsmouth the 3 seed.  In the 4×200 Pinkerton is again the top seed followed by Windham, Bedford and Memorial.

Field Events

Michael Dettore of Exeter is undefeated in state competition this year in the Long Jump.  He has a season best 21’7” as the top seed.  Behind him is two seed Brady McInnes of Dover at 20’10”.  In the high jump Sami Witta and Barion Perry of Nashua South look to secure a boatload of points as the 1-2 seeds.  Sami is the only boy over 6ft.  In the Shot Put, Toby Brown of Nashua North is the 1 seed and one of the best throwers in New England with a mark of 58’1.5”.  Could he be only the second boy in recent memory to go past the 60 foot mark?  He is followed by his teammate Darius Smith also over 50ft.


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