Londonderry High veteran girls’ outdoor track and field coach Sue Johnson saw her Lady Lancers put forth a superb effort and fall mere points short of their second-ever state championship on Sunday, while coach Matt Smith’s LHS boys wound up sixth out of 16 competing teams that d`ay.
The LHS crews took on the best track and field squads that New Hampshire Division I has to offer at the D-I meets at Winnacunnet High School in Hampton. The events were initially slated for on Friday, May 30, but were cancelled due to weather, and that decision was a great one as Sunday’s weather was nearly perfect.
The Lady Lancers snared the fifth runner-up finish in their outdoor track and field history by winding up just 5 1/2 points (score of 80.50) behind the title-winning Bedford Lady Bulldogs (86 points). The host Winnacunnet Lady Warriors were third with 73 points.
The Lancer guys tallied a score of 34 to end up sixth, with Pinkerton rolling to the championship with a tally of 100. LHS junior standout Starlin Ortiz collected 24 of the Londonderry points himself.
If there is frustration in the Lady Lancers’ camp, Johnson and her charges still have plenty to be proud of in the wake of the runner-up finish – out of 18 teams.
The locals registered 14 point-scoring performances, with wins coming from Natalie Howes in the javelin (a throw of 122 feet, 4 inches), Yorgelis Ortiz in the 100-meter dash (12.66 seconds), Kristen Bourque in the 200 dash (25.90, with Ortiz second), and the 4×100 relay quartet of Hannah Brownstein, Jackie Luckhardt, Ortiz, and Bourque (49.75).
The girls also got third places from Howes in the pole vault, the 4×800 relay team, Luckhardt in the javelin, and Makayla D’Urso in the 800.
Other scoring performances were registered by Patty Driscoll (two), Ortiz, and Jordan Dufresne.
Starlin Ortiz did his noteworthy point-scoring for the boys’ crew with a win in the long jump (21 feet), a second in the high jump, and a third in the 110 hurdles.
The Lancer males also snagged a second place in the 4×800 and a fifth in the 4×400 to get to their point tally of 34.