Locals eye C-WMass meet Forecast of rain forces move to Monday
The track and field postseason has undergone a facelift this year.
This weekend has previously been reserved for the Western Massachusetts Championships, which took all Division I and II teams and combined them for a meet. That has been scraped and replaced this season with the Western-Central Mass. Division I and Division II Championships.
All seven of the local track and field teams will take part in the Western-Central Division II Championships on Monday at Westfield State University, which will shift to Fitchburg State University next spring on a rotating basis. There will no longer be a mixed division WMass meet.
The area features six athletes with No. 1 seeds entering the competition, which gets underway at 1. The Frontier Regional School girls’ team, fresh off its resounding victory at the WMass Division II meet this past Friday in Buckland, will also try to repeat the feat in a field that now includes CMass teams.
Mahar Regional School’s Sabrina Silva leads the girls’ field with a pair of top seeds. Silva enters the discus with a throw of 117 feet, nearly four feet better than second seed Mariah Collins, from Southwick-Tolland Regional High School, who comes in at 113-2. Silva’s shot put distance of 41-0.25 is well ahead of Narragansett Regional High School’s Gaelin Farrell, who is second at 37-4.
Frontier’s Natalie Mako is the top seed in the 2-mile with a time of 11 minutes, 3.69 seconds, which is 18 seconds better than Sutton High School’s Jessie Cardin, who is second at 11:21.24. Mako is also the third seed in the mile with a time of 5:18.84, which is just back of Lunenburg High School’s Brooke Hansel (5:15.13).
The pole vault is an event dominated by area jumpers. Mahar’s Ally Parker is the top seed at 9-6, while Pioneer Valley Regional School’s Sydney Martin is second at 9-0. Mohawk’s Abbie Yezierski, Pioneer’s Victoria Laskoski, and Frontier’s Mairead Ferry and Jaime Byrne are tied with the fourth best jumps at 8-6.
Parker is also the second seed in the long jump at 17-7, just behind top-seeded Emily Dawidczyk from Oxford High School at 17-9.5. Pioneer freshman Danielle Devine is the tied with Uxbridge High School’s Emily Cahill for the top seed in the high jump at 5-4, while Frontier’s Clare Cycz is third at 5-2. Turners Falls High School’s Emilee Felton is third in the javelin at 116-9, nearly 13 feet back of Millbury High School’s Molly McCausland, the top seed at 129-4.
Just like the girls’ pole vault, Franklin County will be well represented in the boys’ pole vault, including top-seeded Vlad Popusoi from Greenfield High School, who enters at 13-9. Popusoi is over two feet better than second-seeded Brendan Lloyd from Monson High School at 11-6. Frontier’s Jamie Blinder and Mahar’s Camden Marshall are tied for third at 11 feet.
Mahar’s Joey Verheyen is among three boys tied for the top seed in the high jump at 6-4 along with Holyoke Catholic High School’s Trevor Lewicki, and Auburn High School’s Nathan Conway. Pioneer’s Greg Betsold is ranked in the top three in a pair of throwing events. Betsold is second in the discus at 138-7, two feet short of top seed Ryan Fowler from Maynard High School (140-7), and he is third in the shot put at 47-1.5, behind Steve St. Jean (Auburn) and Nick Gutheil (Ayer High School), who are tied for the top seed at 49-6.