Track & field: Concord wins 9 events at Londonderry Invite; Coe-Brown, Winnisquam boys finish second at large invitationals ahead of weekend state championships

Concord’s Alain Twite competes in the long jump at the Londonderry Invitational on Saturday. Twite won the long jump at the meet and is a threat to win the triple jump, long jump and high school at Saturday’s NHIAA Division I championship in Portsmouth.

Concord’s Alain Twite competes in the long jump at the Londonderry Invitational on Saturday. Twite won the long jump at the meet and is a threat to win the triple jump, long jump and high school at Saturday’s NHIAA Division I championship in Portsmouth. JAY SMITH / NHXCTF

Concord’s Nick Reynolds throws the javelin at the Londonderry Invitational on Saturday. Reynolds won both the javelin and the high jump and is the top-seeded javelin thrower for this weekend’s NHIAA Division I championship meet.

Concord’s Nick Reynolds throws the javelin at the Londonderry Invitational on Saturday. Reynolds won both the javelin and the high jump and is the top-seeded javelin thrower for this weekend’s NHIAA Division I championship meet. JAY SMITH / NHXCTF

Concord’s Chloe Gudas crosses the finish line to win in the 800 meters at the Londonderry Invitational on Saturday. Gudas will compete at Saturday’s Division I championship for the Crimson Tide.

Concord’s Chloe Gudas crosses the finish line to win in the 800 meters at the Londonderry Invitational on Saturday. Gudas will compete at Saturday’s Division I championship for the Crimson Tide. JAY SMITH / NHXCTF

Concord’s Morgan Doherty races in the 100-meter hurdle finals at the Londonderry Invitational on Saturday. Doherty won the race and is the No. 2 seed for the 100 hurdles at the upcoming Division I championship.

Concord’s Morgan Doherty races in the 100-meter hurdle finals at the Londonderry Invitational on Saturday. Doherty won the race and is the No. 2 seed for the 100 hurdles at the upcoming Division I championship. JAY SMITH / NHXCTF

By DAN ATTORRI

Monitor staff

Published: 05-20-2024 6:26 PM

With the NHIAA division championships just a week away, most area high school track and field programs participated in competitive invitationals for one final tune-up over the weekend.

Six Concord High athletes won individual titles at the non-scoring Londonderry R.E.A.L. Invitational while the Coe-Brown Northwood Academy boys’ team finished second at the Seacoast Championship and the Winnisquam Regional boys’ team was the runner-up at the Wilderness League Championship.

Seed meetings for Division I, D-II and D-III on Monday night will determine which athletes will be competing at this weekend’s state championships. The D-III state championship will be Thursday night at Winnisquam Regional High School in Tilton, D-II will be Friday night at Oyster River High School in Durham and D-I will be on Saturday morning at Portsmouth High School.

Here is a recap of the final meets of the regular season from this past weekend and a preview of what to look for at the state championships:

Londonderry Invite

Team scores weren’t kept at the R.E.A.L Londonderry Invitational on Saturday, but a quick look at the top of the event standings shows that Concord will be a force to be reckoned with this weekend.

Seven Crimson Tide athletes took home individual titles at the 22-team event, with senior Nick Reynolds winning the high jump (5 feet, 10 inches) and javelin (168-6), junior Colby Nyhan winning the pole vault (13-6) and senior Alain Twite claiming the victory in the long jump (20-11.75) to lead the Concord boys.

Twite also finished second in the triple jump (45-10.5) and tied for fifth in the high jump (5-8), and Reynolds finished fifth in the triple jump.

For the Tide girls, junior Ella Goulas won both the long jump (17-2.25) and triple jump (35-5.25) and finished fourth in the high jump. Senior Chloe Gudas won the 800 meters in 2 minutes, 21.36 seconds, junior Shelly Smith won the 3,200 (11:42.81) and senior Morgan Doherty won the 100 hurdles (15.37 seconds) and finished sixth in the long jump.

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Senior Ayva Mullen (second triple jump, 35-4.5), senior Kendall Barton (second pole vault), junior Nabah Yayha (second 400, 1:00.29), freshman Mahalie Burdette (third 3,200), junior Maddie Muller (fourth pole vault), junior Makayla Root (fifth javelin), senior Kelley Mikelson (tied fifth high jump) and sophomore Grace Saysaw (fourth triple jump, qualified for the 100-meter dash finals) are other individuals who will be competitive in D-I.

As further evidence of the Tide’s depth, both the 4x100 (Chelsea Toenah, Goulas, Ballay Conteh, Saysaw) and 4x400 (Morgan Doherty, Gudas, Gianna Gualtieri, Yahya) relays finished second, while the 4x800 (Elliana Wing, Burdette, Clover Doperalski, Quinn Doherty) came in sixth.

With top seeds like Goulas (ranked No. 1 in D-I in the high jump and triple jump), Morgan Doherty (No. 2 in the 100 hurdles) and Barton (No. 2 in pole vault), depth in many events (such as Goulas, Walsh and Saysaw giving Concord the Nos. 1-3-4 rankings in the triple jump) and balance (Concord has a top-eight seed in 12 of the 18 events), the Crimson Tide girls have a serious shot at the title.

The boys don’t have the same depth that the girls’ team does, but with athletes like Twite and Reynolds potentially winning multiple events, you can’t count Concord out.

Concord Christian’s Rolen Sanderson finished second in the 400 in 50.23 seconds, the fastest time posted in D-III this year.

Merrimack Valley’s Nic Oglesby tied for second in the high jump at 5-10 (finished second based on number of attempts) and is an athlete to watch in D-II.

Seacoast Championship

Coe-Brown — the three-time defending D-II outdoor track champions and two-time defending D-II indoor track champions — finished second at the 13-team Seacoast Championship on Friday at Exeter High School in a field of mostly D-I teams.

D-I Winnacunnet won with 99 points, with CBNA finishing second with 81 ahead of D-I’s Exeter (78) and Portsmouth (71) and D-II’s Oyster River (52) in the top five.

Senior Elias Warner won the discus (153-9) and shot put (46-3.5), and fellow senior Jamie Lano won the 800 in 1:55.09.

Luc Kerouac (third 1,600), Thomas Small (fourth shot put and fourth discus), Alex Conner (fourth pole vault), Sanjith Nomula (fifth 800), Warner (fifth javelin), Bryce Sartin (sixth long jump and sixth triple jump), Anthony Szatko (sixth 400), Ben Jobin (sixth 3,200) and Cameron Lee (sixth 300 hurdles) also scored points on Friday and could contribute to Coe-Brown’s tally at the D-II state meet as well.

Coe-Brown also showed its depth by finishing second in all three relays — the 4x100 (Lee, Ethan Newick, Travis Schultz, Szatko), 4x400 (Szatko, Lano, Lee, Kerouac) and 4x800 (Liam McLean, Max Lemay, Gavin Dyjak, Keegan Sousa) — and showed the Bears are the team to beat on Friday night.

“The boys are doing great with an ‘all hands on deck’ mentality,” said co-head coach Lucas Fisher. “Everyone is chipping in and supporting each other during this championship season. Senior leaders Warner, Lano and Nomula are leading the way for the Bears. Our sprint group is growing and making large strides with Lee, Newick, Schultz and Szatko. Everyone is looking forward to having a chance to compete at the highest level.”

On the girls’ side, Portsmouth (102.4), Oyster River (92), Exeter (89), Winnacunnet (61.2) and Coe-Brown (48) were the top five teams.

Oyster River won the past two indoor seasons and should score well over 100 points in Friday’s championship, but the Bears (the three-time defending outdoor champions) are in a good position to take the silver.

Coe-Brown’s 4x100 of Shannon Ross, Bristol Shirland, Delaney Manning and Kylie Prusia won in 52.70 seconds.

Emma Zeblisky (second javelin), Shirland (third 100 hurdles), Ross (third pole vault), Paige Murdough (third 3,200), Isabella Grenier (fourth discus, sixth shot put), Manning (fourth 100), Ainsley Kilbreth (sixth discus) and the fifth-place 4x800 team (Madison Taylor, Meredith Kerivan, Murdough, Annabelle Lovett) scored the rest of the Bears’ points.

“We are excited about both teams after the Seacoast Championships,” Fisher said. “Our throws group is having an excellent and consistent season. Our distance group is consistently improving, and we are seeing continued improvement of our young sprinters and hurdlers, several of whom have cracked top 10 in D-II in their events.”

Freshmen Shirland (hurdles), Brooke Main and Tess Kouchoukos (sprints) and Bianca Brouillard-Smith (jumps) are other athletes highlighted by Fisher as those who could make an impact at states.

Look for the Bow girls to be near Coe-Brown in the standings as Oyster River’s main challengers.

Monadnock Last Chance

The Coe-Brown boys are the favorites in D-II, but if anyone can challenge them it’s John Stark, which finished second to Coe-Brown by two points this past indoor season.

The Generals wrapped up their regular season on Friday at the Monadnock Last Chance Invitational, finishing second out of 12 teams.

Pelham (105), John Stark (99.5) and Trinity (91.5) were the top three boys’ teams, pulling away from the rest of the field.

Senior Logan Montgomery won both the 200 (22.97 seconds) and the 400 (51.67) and tied for third in the high jump; junior Rio Calle won the long jump in 20-0.5, finished fifth in the 200 and tied for fifth in the high jump; and senior Joel Douzanis won the shot put (47-2.5) and finished second in the triple jump.

Eli Lemire (second 1,600), Alex Descoteau (second discus), Cedar Beaupre (second 400), Sam Kinsey-Turner (tied third high jump), Ethan Veilleux (fifth 400, fifth long jump) and Owen Dion (fifth javelin) also contributed to the Generals’ scoring.

John Stark’s 4x800 of Alex Keirstead, Austin Patenaude, Beaupre and Veilleux finished second.

The Generals caught D-II by surprise in indoor, but based on how well they’ve performed this season, especially in the field events, they’re a known powerhouse in D-II now.

On the girls’ side, John Stark finished second with 86 points, behind Pelham’s 111. Trinity (78) and Conant (61) finished third and fourth, respectively.

Senior Reaghan Lamothe won the 400 in 1:06.98, sophomore Jenna Sinclair won the high jump at 4-1 and the javelin at 95-8, Stark’s 4x400 squad (Lamothe, Izabel Korbet, Madelyn Morette, Elsa Winther) won in 4:43 and the 4x800 group (Rylee Barnard, Kayla Barriere, Anna Chasse, Elsa Winther) won in 11:08.

Chasse (second 1,600), Becca Mussey (third javelin, fourth discus), Barriere (third 1,600), Ayris Beliveau (third 300 hurdles, fourth 100 hurdles) and Barnard (fifth 800) scored individually.

Wilderness League Championship

With 21 teams from central and northern New Hampshire competing and most D-III programs represented, the Wilderness League Championship was a good measuring stick for what to expect at the D-III state championship.

The Winnisquam boys measured up the best out of area programs in Saturday’s meet at Newfound Regional High Schools, taking runner-up honors.

D-II Kennett scored 65 points, but Winnisquam had the most points of all D-III programs, albeit narrowly, with 43.

Inter-Lakes and Profile tied for third with 42 points each, while Mascoma (41), Bishop Brady (40) and Laconia (40) came in fifth through seventh, respectively.

Belmont (12th, 27 points), Kearsarge (tied 16th, eight points) and Franklin (no score) were the other area teams that competed.

Winnisquam junior Brendan Goodwin won the 800 in 2:00.73, Bishop Brady senior Josh Gentchos finished first in both the 100-meter dash (11.07 seconds) and 200 (22.37 seconds), and Brady sophomore Ryan Casey won the 300 hurdles (44.61 seconds).

David Swain (second pole vault), Avery Woods (fourth 300 hurdles), Victor Pham (fourth triple jump), Henry Osmer (fifth 800) and Taber Haggett (sixth high jump) scored points for Winnisquam.

Kearsarge’s Daniel Dalbec (second 1,600); Belmont’s David Tripp (second 110 hurdles, fifth 300 hurdles), Brady Filteau (third discus), Colby Vetter (fourth 100) and Hunter Erlick (sixth javelin); and Bishop Brady’s Alan Yap (fifth 200) were the other area scorers.

Bishop Brady’s runner-up 4x100 team (Yap, Joshua-Stephen Bissah, Casey, Gentchos), Winnisquam’s second-place 4x400 squad (Goodwin, Woods, Haggett, Osmer), fourth-place 4x100 group (Francis McComiskey, Pham, Nathan Lavoie, Dylan Griffin) and fifth-place 4x800 quartet (Dylan Allard, Alessio Calderara, Philipp Rompf, David Swain) were the scoring relays.

On the girls’ side, Newfound (72.5), Gilford (65), Belmont (62), Winnisquam (55) and Kearsarge (54) were the top five teams and should all be in contention for D-III crown, along with Hopkinton.

Bishop Brady (15th, three points) and Franklin (no score) were the other local teams that competed.

Junior Adeline Takantjas won the triple jump at 33-5 and 100 hurdles in 17.02 seconds and finished second in the 300 hurdles to lead Belmont. Ava Lacasse (second 100, tied second triple jump, third 200), Aspen Fillebrown (fifth 100 hurdles), the third-place 4x400 group (Jaelyn Nialetz, Rebekah Edgren, Takantjas, Lacasse), fourth-place 4x100 team (Talia Watson, Ella Stevens, Cate McDonald, Kyleigh Roe) and sixth-place 4x800 squad (Emilie Defrancesco, Riley Degange, Edgren, Eleni Papadopolulos) also scored for the Raiders.

Seniors Victoria Kelly (first javelin in 104-0, fifth 300 hurdles) and Skye Tibbetts (first long jump at 15-9.75, tied fourth high jump) led Winnisquam. Lauren MacDonald (second shot put, third javelin, fourth discus), Brianna Harlow (fifth 800), the fourth-place 4x400 group (Kaiden Robb, Emily Tripple, Denessa Williams, Kyra Russell) and the fifth-place 4x100 team (Robb, Williams, MacDonald, Skye Tibbetts) also scored for the Bears.

Sophomores Ainsley Frenkiewich (first pole vault at 8-0, fourth in the triple jump) and Maelle Jacques (first high jump at 5-0, second 1,600) led Kearsarge. Amelia Lefebvre (second high jump, third shot put, sixth 200), Gabrielle Lamb (fourth javelin, sixth discus), Annika Lackstrom (sixth 1,600) and the sixth-place 4x100 team (Joslyn Ingram, Amber Chamberlain, Klara Byfield, Avery Raia) also scored for the Cougars.

Morgan Casey (tied fourth high jump) scored for Bishop Brady.