Staples edges Danbury to repeat as LL girls track champions
Updated 10:12 pm, Tuesday, June 2, 2015
NEW BRITAIN -- Locked in a tight battle for most of the Class LL girls outdoor track championships, Staples needed every point it could get to catch Danbury and Glastonbury, which both leaped out to an early lead.
The Wreckers closed the gap late, as a 20-point effort by Hannah DeBalsi and 19 points from jumper Brigid van Dorsten were enough to propel Staples to its second straight Class LL title. The Wreckers (84 points) edged the Hatters (78 points), while Glastonbury finished third (72.25), Ridgefield (54) came home fourth and Newtown finished fifth (43.25).
The 1,600-meter run at the Class LL meet has been a showcase event for DeBalsi, who won it for a third straight year. DeBalsi won that event in 4:53.51 before cruising to victory in the 3,200 (10:31.63), providing the Wreckers with much-needed points.
DeBalsi was tested by Glastonbury's Kaitlyn Hebert in the 1,600, holding a narrow lead before pulling away in the final few laps. The charismatic announcer claimed DeBalsi had a `submarine-sized' advantage down the stretch.
"I don't even know how long a submarine is, so that didn't really help," DeBalsi joked. "It was nice to know how far behind me she was, and it made me push."
DeBalsi had an oil-taker sized advantage over Hebert in the 3,200 and nearly lapped the back of the field in winning the race.
Van Dorsten finished second in the triple jump and high jump, and claimed another three points with a sixth in the long jump.
"As a senior and a captain, I don't even think about personal bests anymore," van Dorsten said. "The second I cleared 5-02 on the high jump, the first thought in my head was I was so glad, we needed these points."
In addition to van Dorsten, Elizabeth Knoll starred in the high jump, clearing 5-06 in winning the event. Teammate Olivia Wiener won the javelin and finished third in the 300 hurdles and Reece Schachne finished second in the javelin.
There was an FCIAC theme to many of the events as locals scored points in nearly every race. In the opening one, the 4x800 relay, Ridgefield (9:26.95) and Danbury (9:36.09) took second and third respectively.
The Hatters quartet of Saintphanie Porcenat, Bridget Chiaravalle, Zyniah Bunn and Niema Riley then captured the 4x100 relay with a time of 48.99, giving the Hatters an early lead in the meet. Chiaravalle won the 100 hurdles while Riley (12.32) took first in the 100 meter dash, with Greenwich's Jenna Restieri finishing third (12.85).
Teammate Leah Sarkisian (2:19.35) claimed victory in the 800, winning by less than a second. Katherine Jasminski (2:20.26) of Ridgefield placed second.
"I felt strong, it was a great track," Sarkisian said. "I had some good competition, they definitely caught up with me and I had to push it out in the end there."
Riley went on to comfortably win the 200, capping a dominating effort in the sprints to keep the Hatters alive. Danbury ended the meet with a second in the 4x400 relay with a time of 4:02.14.
"Every point counts and we have a really strong team," Sarkisian said. "We're strong in a lot of areas, which is really important to us."
Fairfield Ludlowe's Emma Koether won the 400 with a time of 58.34, narrowly missing her personal best time of 57.30. Koether, a senior, was seeded first in last year's race at this meet, but settled for second and wanted to make amends in 2015.
"I'm really excited," Koether said. "After last year I just kept thinking to myself, don't do that again this is your last chance. I was glad to be able to win it."
Koether also finished second in the 200.
Greenwich senior Sarah Cicchetti placed second in the shot put (34-08.50) and placed fifth in the discus with a throw of 107-06. Teammate Jenny Goggin placed fifth in the 800. The Cardinals placed 10th as a team with 34.25 points.
The State Open is slated for Monday back at Willow Brook Park.
CIAC Class LL Girls Outdoor Track
Team scores: 1. Staples 84, 2. Danbury 78, 3. Glastonbury 72.25, 4. Ridgefield 54, 5. Newtown 43.25, 6. Shelton 42, 7. (tie) Hamden and NFA 36, 9. Cheshire 35, 10. Greenwich 34.25, 11. Amity 31, 12. East Hartford 27.25, 13. Ludlowe 27, 14. Manchester 21, 15. (tie) Westhill and New Britain 16, 17. Conard 13, 18. Norwalk 12, 19. Southington 9, 20. Trumbull 8, 21. Warde 5, 22. West Haven 2.
Winner and regional finishers among top six in each event
100: 1. Niema Riley (Danbury) 12.32; 2. Tamia Taylor (Norwalk) 12.70; 3. Jenna Restieri (Greenwich) 12.85; 5. Amanda Deenihan (Westhill) 13.09; 6. Sanitphanie Porcenant (Danbury) 13.13; 200: 1. Niema Riley (Danbury) 25.40; 2. Emma Koether (Ludlowe) 26.34; 5. Deanna Singewald (Norwalk) 26.47; 400: 1. Emma Koether (Ludlowe) 58.34; 4. Hailey Conrad (Newtown) 59.64; 5. Rachel Hurst (Ludlowe) 59.88; 800: 1. Leah Sarkisian (Danbury) 2:19.35; 2. Katherine Jasminski (Ridgefield) 2:20.26; 4. Hannah Fleming (Ridgefield) 2:20.56; 5. Jennifer Goggin (Greenwich) 2:21.16; 6. Melissa Taggart (Amity) 2:21.76; 1600: 1. Hannah DeBalsi (Staples) 4:53.51; 3. Erin Tressler (Newtown) 5:18.63; 5. Erica Randazzo (Westhill) 5:20.02; 3200: 1. Hannah DeBalsi (Staples) 10:31.63; 3. Hannah Fleming (Ridgefield) 11:08.42; 4. Erica Randazzo (Westhill) 11:11.72; 6. Katelynn Romanchick (Trumbull) 11:22.00; 100 hurdles: 1. Bridget Chiaravalle (Danbury) 15.40; 2. Lauren Duhl (Amity) 15.55; 3. Josephine Simon (Ridgefield) 15.84; 4. Stephanie Sheehan (Warde) 15.89; 6. Laurel Bailey (Shelton) 16.83; 300 hurdles: 1. Danielle Brinckman (Glastonbury) 46.73; 2. Makenna Cerney (Newtown) 47.29; 3. Olivia Wiener (Staples) J47.29; 4. Lauren Duhl (Amity) 47.44; 6. Josephine Simon (Ridgefield) 47.53; 4x100 relay: 1. Danbury (Saintphanie Porcenat, Bridget Chiaravalle, Zyniah Bunn, Niema Riley) 48.99; 4x400 relay: 1. Glastonbury 4:01.16; 2. Danbury (Olivia Turk, Abigail Llanos, Gabriela Collado, Leah Sarkisian) 4:02.14; 4. Ridgefield (Katherine Jasminski, Hannah Mercorella, Julia Hergenrother, Alexandra Damron) 4:09.00; 5. Ludlowe (Cassandra Factora, Sullie Desmond, Rachel Hurst, Emma Koether) 4:09.08; 6. Greenwich (Emma Slagle, Treloara Harrison, Jennifer Goggin, Emily Philippides) 4:09.10; 4x800 relay: 1. Glastonbury 9:14.96 (meet record); 2. Ridgefield (Katherine Jasminski, Hannah Mercorella, Julia Hergenrother, Hannah Fleming) 9:26.95; 3. Danbury (Leah Sarkisian, Gabriela Collado, Olivia Turk, Abigali Llanos) 9:36.09; 4. Amity (Lisa Gorham, Charlotte Gorham, Melissa Taggart, Emily Criscuolo) 9:37.77; 6. Greenwich (Sabrina Thurber, Amy Wyle, Daryl Kennedy, Jennifer Goggin) 9:55.51; high jump: 1. Elizabeth Knoll (Staples) 5-6 (tied meet record); 2. Bridget van Dorsten (Staples) 5-2; 6. Grace Goodwin (Ridgefield) 4-10; pole vault: 1. Laurel Bailey (Shelton) 10-6; 3. Lauren Russo (Newtown) 9-6; 5. Sophia Corde (Staples) 8-6; 6. Danielle Richardson (Westhill) J8-6; long jump: 1. Janaia Skibitcky (Cheshire) 17-4.75; 3. Zoie Reed (Amity) 16-10; 4. Elizabeth Knoll (Staples) 16-9.25; 6. Bridget van Dorsten (Staples) 16-3.75; triple jump: 1. Janaia Skibitcky (Cheshire) 35-3.75; 2. Bridget van Dorsten (Staples) 34-10; 5. Sara Lipinski (Shelton) 33-7; 6. Ruby Mboya (Danbury) 33-6.25; shot put: 1. Samantha Stevens (Shelton) 36-7.75; 2. Sarah Cicchetti (Greenwich) 34-8.5; 4. Michaela Nowacki (Newtown) 32-3.5; discus: 1. Samantha Stevens (Shelton) 121-3; 2. Michaela Nowacki (Newtown) 118-9; 5. Sarah Cicchetti (Greenwich) 107-6; 6. Jessica Robbins (Danbury) 93-7; javelin: 1. Olivia Wiener (Staples) 121-1; 2. Reece Schachne (Staples) 113-8; 4. Lauren Oakes (Shelton) 104-9; 5. Clara Lerchi (Ridgefield) 103-9; 6. Tara Oliver (Trumbull) 103-3.