Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
L/rain
65°
L/rain
Hi 69° | Lo 58°

Amherst boys indoor track defends PVIAC championship

  • Taj-Amir Torres of Amherst crosses the finish line in the 55-meter dash final Monday at Smith College.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS

    Taj-Amir Torres of Amherst crosses the finish line in the 55-meter dash final Monday at Smith College.
    JERREY ROBERTS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Robert Sailer of Amherst, left, runs the mile ahead of Jeremy Doele of Northampton Monday at Smith College. JERREY ROBERTS

    Robert Sailer of Amherst, left, runs the mile ahead of Jeremy Doele of Northampton Monday at Smith College. JERREY ROBERTS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Noah Jackson of Northampton, front, runs the 300-meter ahead of Sean O'Connor of South Hadley Monday at Smith College.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS

    Noah Jackson of Northampton, front, runs the 300-meter ahead of Sean O'Connor of South Hadley Monday at Smith College.
    JERREY ROBERTS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Rachel Harrington of South Hadley smiles at the finish line after taking a second place in the 1000-meter Monday at Smith College.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS

    Rachel Harrington of South Hadley smiles at the finish line after taking a second place in the 1000-meter Monday at Smith College.
    JERREY ROBERTS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Kanya Brown of Amherst crosses the finish line in the 55-meter dash Monday at Smith College.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS

    Kanya Brown of Amherst crosses the finish line in the 55-meter dash Monday at Smith College.
    JERREY ROBERTS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Taj-Amir Torres of Amherst crosses the finish line in the 55-meter dash final Monday at Smith College.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS
  • Robert Sailer of Amherst, left, runs the mile ahead of Jeremy Doele of Northampton Monday at Smith College. JERREY ROBERTS
  • Noah Jackson of Northampton, front, runs the 300-meter ahead of Sean O'Connor of South Hadley Monday at Smith College.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS
  • Rachel Harrington of South Hadley smiles at the finish line after taking a second place in the 1000-meter Monday at Smith College.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS
  • Kanya Brown of Amherst crosses the finish line in the 55-meter dash Monday at Smith College.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS

NORTHAMPTON — The Amherst Regional boys indoor track and field team successfully defended its PVIAC championship on Monday.

The Hurricanes scored 68 points, outpacing second-place Westfield (61) and a third-place tie between Chicopee Comp and Central (48).

Amherst recorded eight top-3 finishes at the meet, including a first-place, record-setting 6.49-second performance in the 55-meter dash by Taj Torres.

“I was nervous coming into it because you never know what’s gonna happen,” Torres said. “I just worked all week as hard as I could on the blocks.”

Having guided the team to a championship last year, Hurricane coach David Thompson said he knew his team was capable of repeating and only needed to give a maximum effort and believe in itself.

“I told my team that, at a certain point, we needed to go get it,” Thompson said. “I told them we gotta go get it, leave everything out there, and if you do that, you’ll come out on top. And that’s what happened.”

With the outcome still in doubt and only a single event remaining, Amherst saved one of its best performances for when it mattered most, finishing first in the 4x400 meter relay with a time of 3:37.04. Torres, who ran the final leg of the relay with Gary Burnett, Allen Vance and Ryan Stender, also placed second in the long jump with a distance of 20 feet, 11 inches. Kieran Presley took home a fourth-place finish in the long jump to help seal the victory for the Hurricanes, much to the delight of his coach.

“I told him, ‘I need you to score in long jump,’ and he came through,” Thompson said. “It was amazing. We knew it was gonna come down to the relays and the long jump.”

Added Presley, “He told me to jump as far as I could. We’ve been practicing all year with Taj and everybody. When it came down to it, I just jumped as far as I could, and it took me there.”

Amherst also placed in the other two relay events. The 4x800 relay team of Michael Stender, Gabe Fishman, Robert Sailer and Connor Evans finished second with a time of 8:01.15. The 4x200 squad of Presley, Devin Clarke, J.J. Phillips and Dylan Owens finishing third in 1:36.92.

Individually, the Hurricanes grabbed three other third-place finishes with Stender running the 2-mile race in 10:04.56, Fishman finishing the mile in 4:33.76 and Evans recording a 2:40.53 in the 1,000 meter.

“I’m proud of them,” Thompson said. “They showed up and all the talk all year was about showing up. Everybody performed to the best of their abilities today, and it showed.”

Northampton finished the meet in eighth place with 22 points and got a third-place finish in the 600 meter from Aidan Gilson (1:28.66) and a third-place finish from its 4x400 relay team (3:43.56). Holyoke Catholic scored six points to finish 11th and recorded a third-place finish in the high jump by Trevor Lewicki (6 feet).

South Hadley finished just behind the Gaels in 12th place with four points.

Related

Northampton girls indoor track second at PVIAC championships

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

NORTHAMPTON — The Northampton girls indoor track & field team did not offer any excuses for coming in second at the PVIAC championships, but circumstances beyond its control cost the Blue Devils a better title opportunity Monday night at Smith College. A key injury suffered during the meet combined with a top performer unable to compete due to sickness factored … 0

There are no comments yet. Be the first!
Post a Comment

You must be registered to comment on stories. Click here to register.