All-State Indoor Track: South Hadley sprinter Jonas Clarke the favorite to win 55-meter title

Staff Writer 
Published: 2/25/2022 6:27:01 PM

A contingent of 15 local athletes will pack their spikes and travel to the Reggie Lewis Center in Boston on Saturday to compete at the MIAA Indoor Track All-State Championship meet.

The meet kicks off at 10:30 a.m. with the long jump and shot put in the field events, as well as the hurdle and dash finals.

The field is highlighted by South Hadley’s Jonas Clarke, who blew the field away in the 55-meter dash at last week’s MIAA Division 5 championships. Clarke crossed the line in 6.24 seconds, breaking the previous meet record of 6.41 and finishing ahead of the rest of the field by over three-tenths of a second.

Clarke enters Saturday’s meet as the No. 1 seed in the event, and his 6.24-second showing is also tied for the fastest time in the country this season. 

Clarke will also join teammates Tyler Evans, Matt McDermott and Liam Sibley-Welch on South Hadley’s 4x200-meter relay team, which is ranked 19th in the field with a time of 1 minute, 35.69 seconds.

On the girls side, South Hadley junior Emma Sanford qualified in three events on Saturday. She’ll compete in the 55-meter hurdles, where she's ranked 19th with a time of 8.92 seconds, and in the high jump, where she’s seeded 8th with a 5 feet, 2 inch starting height. 

Sanford will also race with teammates Bella Alcaraz, Abigail Gelinas, Lauren Marjanski in the 4x200 meter relay. The South Hadley team is seeded 24th with a time of 1:51.26. 

Amherst will also send a relay team to the All-State meet; the 4x800 relay team of Diego Lopez, Kyle Yanko, Ben Buffone and David Pinero-James are ranked 8th overall with a time of 8:21.97.

In addition to their relay, Buffone and Pinero-James will both compete in an individual event at the All-State meet. Buffone is ranked 22nd in the 1,000 meter run (2:38.58) and Pinero-James is seeded 12th in the 600 meter run (1:24.79). 

Hampshire Regional will send a pair of high jumpers to the All-State meet in Grace Plumer and Josh Denoronha. Plumer is ranked 12th with a starting height of 5-0, while Denoronha is 25th with a 5-10 starting height. 

Northampton’s Theodore King-Pollet is the Blue Devils’ lone qualifier. King-Pollet will compete in the 2-mile run, where he’s ranked 26th with a time of 10:25.88. 

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