The Londonderry High School boys’ and girls’ track and field squads got to compete within the friendly confines of their own Larry Martin complex not once but twice last week, with each playing host to two opponents in tri-meets on Wednesday, May 16 before hosting their Seventh Annual Londonderry Track and Field Invitational on Saturday the 19th.
But the locals’ level of success in familiar territory was only fair to middling, especially in the tri-meet against those arch-rivals from Pinkerton Academy and the squads from Exeter High School.
The three-team meet brought with it some tremendously mixed emotions for the girls, who finished second to Pinkerton (89 points) with 60 points but ahead of Exeter’s total of 53. However, the squad was dealt a major loss when junior multi-event standout Maddie Croteau suffered a severe ankle injury during warm-ups and had to be taken from Wednesday’s event by emergency medical personnel.
The Lancer effort was paced by another outstanding junior pole-vaulter and gymnast – Suzie Moore – who finished first with a leap of 9 feet, 6 inches. Her teammate Gianna DelViscovo was second with a jump of 8′. The Londonderry girls also got a win from Kaylie Longua in the long jump (15’8″).
The hosts took second, third, and fourth in the 200-meter dash thanks to the efforts of Jess Brien, Longua, and Erica Waters respectively, and other second places came from Seana Kelly in the 100-meter hurdles, Brien in the high jump, Akolam Wambu in both the shot put and the discus, and the squad’s 4×100 and 4×400 relay quartets.
Other thirds were snared by Nikki Longua in the 100 hurdles and Paige Velie in the discus.
At Saturday’s invitational – which was not a team-scored competition – Moore once again won the pole vault (8’6″) and the Lady Lancers bagged seconds in the 4×100 and the 4×800.
Other top-six finishes were registered by Kaylie Longua in the long jump (third), Wambu in the discus (fifth), Kelly in the 100 hurdles (sixth), and Ashley Griffin in the pole vault (sixth).
In their three-team battle with Pinkerton and Exeter, the Lancer males tallied some 47 points to place well behind powerful PA (122.5) but just behind the Blue Hawks (50.5).
Event victories were notched by Khalique Bagley in the 100 (11.59), Will Heenan in the 800-meter run (2 minutes, 04.29 seconds), Patrick Hagearty in the shot (48’2″), and the squad’s 4×400 relay crew (3:39.47).
Other scoring performances came from Justin Cassidy in the 100 (second), Hagearty in the discus (second), and Matt Griffin and Kerry Daley in the 3,200-meter run (second and third).
At the invitational, the LHS guys had Hagearty win the discus (137’9″) and take second in the shot, their 4×100 and 4×400 relay quartets take thirds, Bagley bag fourth in the 200 dash, and Heenan come in sixth in the 1,600.
The two Londonderry High contingents will be testing their mettle against all of Division I this Friday at the D-I state meet, which will be held at Merrimack High.