A dozen key returnees combined with a slew of other athletes with important varsity experience mixed in with some promising newcomers should make the Londonderry High School girls’ outdoor track and field squad a real player in Division I again this spring.
Longtime coach Sue Johnson’s 2015 Lady Lancer contingent posted a 3-2 regular season record and then went on to be the runner-up at the Division I championship meet. And the LHS girls’ younger athletes on last year’s squad won the annual Freshman-Sophomore Meet.
When looking at her roster this spring, Johnson saw a great many reasons for optimism, especially if her battle-tested veterans can perform well and fulfill vital leadership roles.
“As always, team success will depend on individual success,” said Johnson. “Our veterans need to lead the way and set the example at practices and meets. If they do their job well and our rookies follow their example, we’re in a very good place for achieving both individual and team goals. That puts pressure on all our girls to be their best as role models when working out at practice, performing in meets, and relating to their peers and coaches as good team members. It’s a challenge that we are all in together.”
The Lady Lancers’ key returnees include seniors Yorgelis Ortiz (sprints and jumps), Andrea Wooldridge (versatile), Madison McKivergan (distances), Jordan Dufresne (versatile) and Courtney Guay (middle-distances), juniors Devyn Enwright (versatile), Bella Ziolek (mids), Kaitlyn Marchant (long sprints), and Ellie Goodspeed (sprints), and sophomores Jessica Brien (sprints and jumps), Alex Seeley (mids), and Kalin Gregoire (mids).
The team’s lengthy list of other varsity returnees includes seniors Olivia Gagan (sprints and jumps), Sarah Moriarty (throws), and Juliana Slavoski, and the roster also includes some 12th graders who will be doing track and field for the first time, including LHS all-state basketball standout Kate Balcom (versatile) and Hannah Cohen (versatile).
When asked what opposing teams she expects to be among the strongest in D-I this spring, Johnson responded, “Based on indoor results and last year, Bedford, Bishop Guertin, and Pinkerton.”
The Lady Lancers get their 2016 season officially under way next Tuesday, April 12 in Concord.
Londonderry Lancers girls track star Yorgelis Ortiz hopes to help her team to the top of the DI standings this season. Photo by Chris Pantazis