Tigers stop Frontier win streak at 107
Devon Roy runs down the runway before taking off on her long jump attempt
Marte Johannessen long jump at Mohawk
Alyse Leonard long jump
Bill Clinton was President, Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls were in the midst of a playoff run to win their fifth NBA title and Tubby Smith became the first African-American hired as men’s basketball head coach at Kentucky on May 13, 1997.
That was also the day Frontier Regional School lost to Mohawk Trail Regional High School, 78-67, in a girls’ track and field meet. The Warriors went on to win the Franklin County League title, but the Red Hawks quickly moved on from the setback.
Frontier proceeded to win 107 consecutive dual meet wins over the next 15-plus seasons, and it took a stellar effort from South Hadley High School’s 4 x 400-meter relay team to finally end the streak.
The Tigers recorded a 3.1-second victory in the 4 x 400 to break a tie meet and knock off the three-time defending Suburban League champion Red Hawks, 75-70, on Tuesday in South Deerfield.
“I thought the girls (in the 4x400) did what they could do,” offered Frontier head coach Bob Smith. “It’s certainly not their fault. I thought they ran the best time we’ve had in a while, but South Hadley (ran it) just a little better.”
Frontier was able to retain a small lead until South Hadley recorded a 1-2 finish in the 400 meters to take the lead. Frontier battled back and tied after the 2-mile, setting up the winner-take-all relay.
Smith added that the finish was emotional — for both teams.
“Mike (Tigers head coach Mike Broulette) said he really doesn’t care about dual meets, but today he said he really cared about it. ... He was crying afterwards. It meant that much to him.”
The loss overshadowed a stellar 18-point performance by the Hawks’ Mairead Ferry, who claimed top honors in the triple jump at 31 feet, 5 inches, as well as the 100-meter high hurdles in 17.9 seconds and the 400 low hurdles in an impressive 69.2 seconds. She also took second in the pole vault.
Amanda Mozea turned in wining efforts in the discus (90-3) and shot put (31-6.25), as did Natalie Mako in the mile (5:29.2) and two-mile (11:18), while Kat Miner won the high jump (5-0) and Sarah Conlisk was first in the 800 meters (2:35.4) for the Red Hawks.
“It’s been really wonderful,” said Smith, when reflecting on the streak. “I have been blessed with a whole parade of amazing athletes who, over the years, did everything they could to continue that streak, and as a coach you can’t possibly ask for more. And I can’t ask for more from today’s kids. They gave everything that they could. I have a bunch of wonderful young women representing our program.”
Smith said he was standing with assistant coach Jim Recore down the stretch watching the final lap of the relay. When it was apparent that the streak was going to end, Recore turned to him and said, “Do you feel that monkey crawling off your back?”
“We shook hands as we do after every meet, and I said to him, ‘I wouldn’t do this any differently, and I wouldn’t change this for the world.’”
Frontier will take a well-deserved break before returning to the track on April 22 for an independent meet at West Springfield High School at 4 p.m.
Mohawk 74, Pioneer 71 — Mohawk Trail Regional High School came back from a 17-point deficit after the field events to narrowly edge Pioneer Valley Regional School, 74-71, in a Franklin County League girls’ track & field meet Tuesday afternoon in Buckland.
The Warriors needed a strong performance in the final events of the afternoon in order to overcome the 40-23 edge that Pioneer had after the field events. The Panthers held that edge until the final few running events when the Warriors were able to stage their comeback. Mohawk captured the top two spots in the 800 as Emma Jepsen won the event in 2:40 and was followed by Maddie Boucias, who took second place. Mohawk then swept the 2-mile, with Abbi Yezierski winning in a time of 13:35, followed by teammates Julia Shean and Lily Wells. That left the meet up to the 4 x 400 relay and Mohawk’s team of Halley Glier, Aimee Funk, Jepsen and Sally Slowinski sprinted home in a time of 4:41.6 to win by 12 seconds and give Mohawk the victory.
“It’s not an easy thing to overcome, but we hung in there,” Mohawk coach Joe Chadwick said. “This group did great today. Pioneer is much-improved this season. Mike Duprey is really helping out in the field events. This was a really great meet, all the events were just as close as the final score.”
Danielle Devine won three events for Pioneer, capturing the 100 high hurdles (18.3), the long jump (15-1.5) and the high jump (5-2). Alyssa Weld won the javelin (94-11) and Jen Tufano took the shot put (30-10).
Mahar 103, Greenfield 41 — It’s been two years since Caitriona Cronin participated in track & field, so when Mahar Regional School coach Sarah Woodward said that she would buy Cronin an ice cream if she threw the javelin 100 feet in the first meet of the season, Woodward figured she had nothing to worry about.
But after Tuesday’s FCL girls’ meet against Greenfield High School, Woodward owes the junior a trip to Friendly’s.
Cronin threw the javelin 100 feet, 8 inches in her first meet since 2011 and Mahar upended Greenfield, 103-41, Tuesday in Orange.
Cronin also won the 100 in 13 seconds. Sabrina Silva, fresh off her New England indoor championship, won the shot put in 40-1, and also captured the discus in 113-9. Ally Parker took a pair of events with a win in the long jump (16-8) and a personal-best in the pole vault at 8-6. Kelsie Bardsley won the 200 (28.9) for the Senators, Karissa Bardsley won the 100 high hurdles (19.7), Colleen Burke won the 400 low hurdles (82.0), and Alexis Barrett won the high jump (4-5). Seventh-grader Hannah Paul also picked up a victory in the 800 with a time of 2:47.
Sabrina Sparda and Eve Charest each won a pair of events for the Green Wave. Charest took the two long-distance events with a time of 6:05 in the mile, and a time of 13:02 in the 2-mile. Sparda won the 400 (66.0) and the triple jump (30-6).
Athol 99.5, Turners Falls 50.5 — Emily Casella and Tanner Favreau each won three events on Tuesday and Athol High School knocked off Turners Falls High School, 99.5-50.5, in a FCL girls’ track & field meet in Turners Falls.
Casella captured the 200 (29.2), the discus (90-1) and the shot put (32-3.25) for the Red Raiders, while Favreau captured the 100 (13.7), 400 low hurdles (78.7) and the long jump (13-2.5). Athol won all but three events on the track, as Lindsey Hamlett won the 400 (69.1), Molly Cleveland took the 800 (2:46) and Holly Brisette won the 2-mile (14:13). Brisette also won the pole vault at 7 feet.
Emilee Felton broke her own school record in the javelin to pace the Indians with her distance of 116-9. Lauren Grimard picked up wins in the 100 high hurdles (19.8) and the high jump (4-4). Clarisse Hutchinson won the mile (6:14), and Kayla Drumgool won the triple jump (28-0.75).
Athol 73, Turners Falls 71 — Matt Summers won three events Tuesday and Athol edged Turners Falls, 73-71, in an Intercounty League boys’ track & field meet in Turners Falls.
Summers won the 200 in 23.8 seconds and also won the long jump (17-9.75) and the high jump (5-6). While the final score was close, the Red Raiders had wrapped up the match with a few events to go.
Athol won all but two of the field events. Kyle White won the triple jump (33-3.75), Travis Heath won the javelin (108-2) and Tom Larose won the pole vault (10-6). The Indians captured a pair of field events as Tyler Peters won the discus (95-9) and the shot put (38-2.25).
The Indians began a comeback on the track, where they won six of the 10 events. Tyler Millane took the 400 (64.8), Bobby Slowinski won the 800 (2:38), Aaron Moore won the mile (5:20), Michael Hartjens won the 2-mile (12:22), and Zaviere Washington won the 110 high hurdles (19.5).
Giovanni Palermo won the 100 for the Red Raiders in 11.6 seconds, while Larose collected his second win of the day in the 400 hurdles in 76.3 seconds.