Several qualified in early season

Published in the April 29, 2016 edition

CURRENT STATE Champ Kevin Wheelock is among those who return to the 2016 MHS spring track team. (file photo) 

CURRENT STATE Champ Kevin Wheelock is among those who return to the 2016 MHS spring track team. (file photo)


MELROSE—For Melrose coach Tim Morris’ boys spring track squad, welcoming talent from fall and winter spring teams has been a key ingredient to success. Melrose has shown strength in their sprint and distance races, already qualifying number of runners and relay teams to States.

Melrose is led by tri-captains Rob Hanlon, Jay Tyler and Jaret Botelho, three talented runner and field event athletes leading Melrose in their first two meets of the season against Reading and Wilmington.

Weather has been a challenge – two of their last three meets have been rescheduled due to snow or rain (including Tuesday’s now-rescheduled meet with Wakefield). Despite coming up on the short end on the win column, Melrose once again is seeing strong individual performances that will extend Melrose’s spring into post season. That includes their distance runners, last year’s Div. 3 State Champ in the one mile, Kevin Wheelock; Adam Cook, who has already qualified for States in the 2 mile; Rob Hanlon, who has seen wins in the 400 and 2 mile, and 400 runner Griffin Barriss (close to qualifying, according to his coach) and 800 runner Sean Conlan. Conlan, Barriss, Hanlon and Joe Brach are part of the already-qualified 4×400 relay team.

Having these cross country standouts (unbeaten Melrose won the league this fall) is a major bonus for the Red Raiders. “Having the cross country and indoor track kids is a big plus to our middle distance and distance events,” says coach Tim Morris.

Conversely, having the high school’s football players on the roster helps jump start their sprinting and field events. Jay Tyler remains one of the most talented sprinters in the league, placing 2nd in a league meet recently in the 100, while teammates Steven Abbott and Will Brincheiro also bring speed to the track in the 200. Melrose’s 4×100 team, made up of Abbott, Brincheiro, Tyler and freshmen find Isaac Feide, has already punched their ticket to states as well.

Field event athletes such as Jaret Botelho, Antonio DiFronzo, Adam Caffey and Nick Anderson have competed in shot put, disc and javelin, while Colin Casey and Brian Mercer bring considerable strength to the track in their events. Look for high jumpers Nick Chan and Lliam Rittenburg to show promise over the season too, according to their coach.

Fans can see the team up close this Tuesday, May 3 at Pine Banks when they host Watertown at Pine Banks at 3:30. They will travel to Stoneham on May 10 before competing with some of the state’s finest on May 14 at the Andover Invitational at Andover High.

Remaining Meets 

Thu 04/28 3:30 pm  vs  Wakefield  Pine Banks – Track

Tue 05/03 3:30 pm   vs  Watertown Pine Banks – Track

Tue 05/10 3:30 pm  @  Stoneham  Stoneham H.S.

Sat 05/14 9:00 am   @  Andover Invitational

Tue 05/17 3:30 pm   @  League Championship at Reggie Lewis

Sat 05/28 9:00 am    @  Burlington  Division 3 States