Silva 2nd, Popusoi 6th in New England

Sabrina Silva’s high school career has officially come to an end.

The girls’ track & field star from Mahar Regional School took home second- and sixth-place finishes Saturday during the New England Track & Field Championships at Veterans Stadium in New Britain, Conn.

Silva, who had won the New England Indoor championship this winter in the shot put, was once again up against her rival Michaela Smith from Newton North High School in the event. Silva entered as the top seed in New England and had defeated Smith all winter long in the indoor postseason, and then got the best of her last weekend at the All-State championships. Smith finally beat Silva in the postseason Saturday as she put the shot 43 feet, 3.5 inches for a personal best to beat Silva, who threw her best-ever distance at 42-4.25 to beat her own previous best by nearly two inches. That distance gave her second place in the event.

In the discus, Silva entered as the seventh seed and finished one spot above her seed in sixth place with a throw of 120-2, which tied her best-ever throw. That left her 16 feet short of Madeline Nicholson from Simsbury (Conn.) High School, who won the event at 136 feet. Mahar coach Sarah Woodward said that while Silva did not win either event, she was not upset because she broke her own personal records in both events on the day.

“She has had an excellent high school career,” Woodward said. “She is one of the most accomplished female athletes that the school has ever seen. She is phenomenal to work with. I don’t think I’ve ever had anyone that has put in as much time and hard work in their career as Sabrina. I can’t wait to see her numbers go up as she moves on to compete at the University of Rhode Island next year.”

Greenfield High School’s Vlad Popusoi was also on hand at the event to compete in the pole vault after he won the All-State event last weekend. As he has done all postseason, Popusoi, who won last weekend with a jump of 14 feet, continued to break school records on Saturday with a jump of 14 feet, 3 inches. According to Greenfield coach Stu Elliott, Popusoi, a junior, nearly cleared 14-9 but knocked the bar off with his hand after clearing most of it.

“If he had another jump, he would have made 14-9,” Elliott said. “He’s got a lot of potential to go higher. He’ll be a 15-foot jumper next year.”

Joseph Fogarasi, a sophomore from Windham (Conn.) High School, won the event at 15 feet, 3 inches.

The third area track athlete to participate was Mahar freshman Ally Parker, who competed in the long jump and finished 16th with a jump of 16-3.25. Catherine Lacy from Darien (Conn.) High School won the event at 19-3.5.

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