Junior Mackenzie Condon won all four of her events and set a school record in the 400-meter hurdles (64.3), freshman Amber Cuthbert set a new personal record (5:43) in the girls mile, and the boys triple-jump team each set personal records in a sweep of their event during a thrilling dual meet on April 26 at home against track powerhouse Bishop Feehan.
Vineyarder athletes, coaches, and fans were smiling for a variety of reasons: all-everything Condon won all four of her events, Richie Barlett, junior javeliner, joined a growing cadre of Vineyarders to qualify for state competition, and, well, any day you have a home meet on the Island is a good day.
If you lose a track meet by a 102-29 score, you generally feel like you took a drubbing, but it sure didn’t feel that way on Thursday in Oak Bluffs after Bishop Feehan and the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School squad finished their dual meet.
Now, Feehan’s talent is capable of beating teams by a big number, but on Wednesday, the Shamrocks’ sheer numbers made a major scoring difference. Feehan brought about 150 athletes, compared with the Vineyarders’ 30-something. That meant, for example, in several track events the Shamrocks filled four or five of the six lanes, and earned uncontested points. For the record, the Feehan boys won 97-34 and Feehan’s girls by 102-29. In all, the Vineyarders won seven of 22 contested events and placed in several others.
The girls two-mile event provided a good example of the power of numbers. Sophomore Catherine Cherry, an elite state two-miler, was the lone MVRHS entrant in a field of six runners. Competing against a talented field, Cherry also found herself boxed in by four Shamrocks for several laps before she broke free, eventually finishing second in a close one. “Yeah, they were definitely watching out for Catherine,” Coach Joe Schroeder said later.
Other headliners included junior Richie Barlett’s 136 foot, 4 inch, javelin throw, which earned him a spot in state divisional competition, while sophomores JoJo Bonneau and Dash Christy joined junior captain J.P. Alves in the triple-jump sweep. As the season goes on, names like sophomore Tyla Packish and freshmen Margaret Sykes and Gabriella Carr begin to show up on the score sheets.
The Vineyarders continued their pace on Saturday in a 43-team relay meet at Apponequet
High School. Cuthbert, Condon, Rose Engler, and Yayla DeChiara combined to set a new MVRHS school record (10:33:49) for 4 x 800m relay.
The Vineyarders’ next team meet is Wednesday, May 2, at 3 pm against Bishop Stang on the newly refurbished track at MVRHS.