In a record-breaking season of firsts for the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School (MVRHS) indoor track team, senior Mackenzie Condon became the first MVRHS athlete to qualify for the New England championships on Saturday in Boston at the All-State championship.
Condon qualified for the New Englands with a sixth-place 55-meter hurdles finish in the state competition at the Reggie Lewis Center in Boston. She nearly qualified in the long jump as well, finishing 10th in Massachusetts among long jumpers. The first eight athletes in an event qualify for the regional competition on March 2 at the Reggie Lewis Center.
The All-State competition is open to all athletes who have recorded the best times in divisional competition.
Nate Packer threw the shot 45 feet, 5 inches, to finish 19th in the state in an event dominated by Aiden Felty of Innovation Academy Charter School (Tyngsboro). Felty broke virtually every shot put record in state history, throwing more than 65 feet on Saturday, 15 feet longer than anyone else. The nationally top-ranked shot putter reportedly will be wearing Duke University blue next year.
Dash Christy, junior MVRHS hurdler, who burst onto the scene as a first-year runner, caught a hurdle in the 55-meter event, but recovered to finish 19th in the state. JoJo Bonneau had also qualified for the 55-meter hurdles, but was unable to compete on Saturday.
And fan favorite Jillian Rawding of Wareham finished 16th in the long jump with a 16-foot, 5-inch, leap. Rawding’s ebullient reaction to making All-States in divisional competition last week provided fans, officials, and competitors with a feel-good moment. Rawding plans to attend Emmanuel next year, where MVRHS (2017) star Pearl Vercruysse is a sophomore track athlete.
“Awesome, just awesome,” MVRHS Coach Joe Schroeder managed to blurt on Saturday when asked to assess the meet. “We’ve never sent anyone to New Englands before, or qualified so many for this meet. For Dash to win the state divisionals and be here in his first year is a major achievement,” he said. Condon and Christy each won state championships last week in divisional state competition.
“The same for Nate and JoJo. Just terrific seasons. I’m so proud of how this team competes. They always show up to compete,” he said.