Published May 2, 2019

PEMBROKE — The North Reading High School girls’ track and field team won the State Relay Championship for the fourth year in a row on Saturday, April 27 at Pembroke High School. Having won the Division 4 State Championship in 2016 and 2017 the team was moved to Division 3 last year. Despite the change they won at the larger school division in 2018 and have done so again in 2019.

Leading the team to victory was captain Megan Lawlor, who scored 9.16 points. She was followed closely by Ali Grasso and Katelyn Gorgenyi who each scored 8.33 points, Julia Thorstad (7.62), Kaitlyn Shevlin (6.66), Ashley Rabbit and Isabella Parrett (5.83) and Lindsay MacLellan and Grace Hadley (5).

Additionally, points were scored by Jessica Hill (3.33), Abigail Martin and Nasha Arnold (2.67), Ava Jolie Femia, Talia Monteleone, and Caitlin Ramo (2.5), and Angelina Casciano, Ellie Janasiewicz, and Kerry O’Brien (2). The NRHS total of 84 points dominated the competition, well ahead of the second place Tewksbury team that scored 48 points. Rounding out the top ten teams were Holliston (28), Medield (26), Plymouth South (23), Burlington (22.5), Melrose (22), Dennis-Yarmouth (20), Dighton-Rehoboth (20) and Nauset (18).

THE HORNETS girls’ track and field team won the State Relay championship for the fourth consecutive year. (Courtesy Photo)

The meet is made up of fifteen total events, eight on the track and seven on the field. On the track, the events include the 4x100m, 4x200m, 4x400m, 4x800m, 1600m Sprint Medley, 4000m Distance Medley, and 4x100m Shuttle Hurdle relays. The field events include the Long Jump, Triple Jump, High Jump, Pole Vault, Javelin Throw, Discus Throw, and Shot Put.

The track events are all four by something, which means four athletes are required in order to contest the event. The SMR (sprint medley relay) is made up of a 800m leg, two 200m legs, and a 400m leg. The DMR (distance medley relay) is made up of a 1200m leg, 400m leg, 800m leg and 1600m leg. The field events require three athletes making marks in order to contest the event. Athletes have three attempts to make a mark and hopefully not foul or fail to clear a height in the vertical jumps (high jump or pole vault). If any athletes fail to do so then the team does not get to score in the event. For these reasons, a well balanced team with many multi-talented and versatile athletes is what is needed to compete for a team title and that is exactly what NRHS has.

The Hornets took first place in seven of the 15 contested events for 70 points. They were victorious in the Long Jump, Triple Jump, Pole Vault, 4x100m, 4×100 Shuttle Hurdles, 4x800m and 400m Distance Medley and also took 2nd in the Javelin and 3rd place in the Pole Vault with a B team for 14 more points.

THE NRHS school record-setters in the long jump played a big role in helping the Hornets win their fourth straight State Relay championship. Pictured from left to right are Kaitlyn Shevlin, Katelyn Gorgenyi and Megan Lawlor. (Courtesy Photo)

A new school record was set as well. The Long Jump team made up of Megan Lawlor, Kaitlyn Gorgenyi and Kaitlyn Shevlin jumped a combined 15.46m (50’ 8.75”) breaking the record of 49’ 6.25” set in 2016 by Victoria Grasso, Juliette Nadeau and Megan Lawlor. The remaining scoring events performed as follows: Triple Jump: 31.03m, Pole Vault A: 7.46m, Pole Vault B: 6.09m, Javelin: 77.05m, 4x100m: 51.22, 4×100 Shuttle Hurdles: 1:06.43, 4x800m: 10:01.44 and DMR: 13:09.06.

The NRHS girls track and field team is clearly a force to be reckoned with at all levels. They have established themselves as the top team in the state; having won the last three state championships, and four in the last five years across both divisions. They have had this success not only at the state championship meet but also at the relay championship meet. The state relay championship stands apart from the state championship because it measures the depth of the team.

Hornets 4-0 at halfway point

The Hornets reached the halfway point of the season with a perfect 4-0 record after easily defeating Pentucket 101-44 and Ipswich 118-27 on April 24. Head coach Sotirios Pintzopoulos called it the most impressive regular season meet performance he has coached in his career.

The victory was led by an impressive sweep in both the Long Jump, Triple Jump and Pole Vault were all three scoring athletes qualified for the state championship. The Long Jump field was so talented that the 4th and 5th place athletes also qualified for the state championship despite not scoring any points. The Hornets also swept the javelin and nearly qualified all three athletes for the state championship in that event as well. Sweeping four events gets you 36 of 73 points needed to win the meet so it was a great start to the meet and the Hornets continued to apply the pressure throughout the meet. Leading the team to victory was Junior Ali Grasso and captain Megan Lawlor who scored 28 and 24.5 points respectively. Lindsay MacLellan scored an impressive 20 points, followed closely by Katelyn Gorgenyi (15.5), Talia Monteleone (14), Ashley Rabbit (12.25), and captains Kelly Bratton and Mia DeNofrio, Grace Hadley, Abby Martin and Isabella Parrett who each scored 10 points. These 11 girls combined for 156.25 of the team’s 217 points, which was 71 percent of the team total, compared to the eight girls that combined for 75 percent of the team points at the previous meet.

GRACE HADLEY opens up a big lead in the distance medley relay. (John Friberg Photo)

Event winners included the following: Mia DeNofrio (Discus), Katelyn Gorgenyi (100 Meter Hurdles), Ali Grasso (400 Meter Hurdles), Grace Hadley (800 Meters), Megan Lawlor (Long Jump and Triple Jump), Isabella Parrett (Pole Vault), Abigail Martin (Javelin), Ali Grasso (Triple Jump), Lindsay Ma- cLellan (One Mile and Two Mile), and the 4×100 Meter Relay team made up of Meredith Martin, Kait- lyn Shevlin, Megan Lawlor and Kaitlyn Gorgenyi.

Also placing in the top three and scoring points in the meet were: Nasha Arnold (Discus and Javelin), Sophia Galuppo (400 Meter Hurdles and 4×400 Meter Relay), Jessica Hill (Pole Vault), Ellie Janasiewicz (400 Meters and 4×400 Meter Relay), Morgan Majeski (4×400 Meter Relay), Abigail McLaughlin (Two Mile), Ella Monteleone (High Jump), Kerry O’Brien (High Jump), Caitlin Raimo (One Mile), Kaitlyn Shevlin (Triple Jump and 4×100 Meter Relay) and Julia Thorstad (800 Meters).

Individuals qualifying for the state championship were as follows: Kaitlyn Gorgenyi (100 Meter Hurdles and Long Jump), Ali Grasso (100 Meter Hurdles, 400 Meter Hurdles, Long Jump and Triple Jump), Grace Hadley (800 Meters), Jessica Hill (Pole Vault), Megan Lawlor (Long Jump and Triple Jump), Lindsay MacLellan (One Mile and Two Mile), Abigail Martin (Javelin) Isabella Parrett (Pole Vault), Ashley Rabbitt (Pole Vault), and Kaitlyn Shevlin (Long Jump and Triple Jump).

The team competed yesterday, on May 1 after press time against Hamilton-Wenham and Amesbury at Hamilton-Wenham High School, look for that story in next week’s Transcript. The Hornet squad will also compete this weekend on Saturday May 4 at a double header; the 9th and 10th graders will compete at the Freshman-Sophomore Cape Ann League Championship and the state qualifying juniors and seniors will compete at the Weston Twilight Meet. The next home meet will be held on Wednesday, May 8 at NRHS which will run from 3:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m.