League champs will be crowned Thursday after yet another eventful MVC dual meet.
It was a busy weekend for the Merrimack Valley Conference boys and girls track-and-field teams.
On Friday, the second league dual meet series was held at Boston University, and the Lowell boys finished 10-0 and the North Andover girls finished 9-0-1 which puts both teams ahead for the MVC Large School standings. This Thursday back at BU (4 p.m.) the final dual meet series will be held and there will be four league champions crowned between boys and girls and large and small school divisions.
Starting with the boys, both Lowell and Central are 9-1 in their division with respective overall records of 19-1 and 18-2. In the small school division, Billerica has the upper hand with an 8-0 division record with Haverhill three wins behind at 5-3, while the two programs have respective overall records of 17-3 and then 9-11.
On the girls’ side, Billerica again has the upper hand in the small school race with 8-0/16-3-1 records, with Tewksbury behind at 5-3 and 8-12. In the large division, it should be another catfight on Thursday between North Andover (10-0/19-0-1) and Central Catholic (8-2/18-2).
In last Friday’s meet, two incredible individual performances were given, starting with Tewksbury’s Makayla Paige who won the 600-meters with a time of 1:30.72, which currently puts her No. 1 in the entire country.
The other came from Methuen’s Stanley Hanci won the 300 with a state-leading time of 35.31 seconds, which qualified him for the New Balance Indoor National Meet, and also broke a school record. Hanci was also a part of the first place and school record 4×200 relay team along with John Dowgiert, Michael Soucy and Nassim Bendimerad, who came in at 1:32.51.
The other double winner was Lowell’s Richmond Kwaateng (pictured on front page), who took the 55-meter dash at 6.50 seconds and long jump at 22-00.50.
Other winners in the boys meet included Lowell’s Joeben Jacobs in the 1,000 (2:39.41), Ricky Thyne in the mile (4:36.11), Samuel Mutiso in the 55-meter hurdles (7.74) and Luis Cadime in the shot put (49-09), North Andover’s Michael Makiej in the high jump (6-5) and its 4×400 relay team (3:26.82), and Billerica’s Thomas Dinsmore in the 600 (1:23.01) and John Holden in the two-mile (10:07.85).
On the girls side, Central Catholic won four events, including the 4×200 (1:49.43) and the 4×400 (4:11.51), while, Kaleigh Lane took the 300 at 42.99 and Katharine Duren won the very competitive 55-meter hurdles at 8.45 seconds.
Other winners included North Andover’s Courtney Dalke in the 1,000 (3:05.17), Sarah Lavery in the high jump (5-5) and Emma Martin in the long jump (16-05.50), Billerica’s Brianna Martini in the shot put (32-07.75) and Nicole Anderson in the mile (5:14.31), Lowell’s Slap Mirambeaux in the two-mile (11:37.31) and Dracut’s Ava Soucy in the 55-meter dash (7.68).
One other note: The MVC is owning the state bests when it comes to boys relays. Methuen set the state-best for the 4×200 at 1:32.51 and North Andover set the state bar in the 4×400 at 3:26.82, according to MA.MileSplit.com. Lowell previously set the top mark in the 4×800 at the MTSCA Winter Distance Classic on Dec. 28 with a time of 8:22.28.
Soucy was back at competing at the Freshmen/Sophomore Small School Meet held at the Reggie Lewis Center on Sunday. She had the top performance taking sixth in the 55-meter dash with a time of 7.73 seconds.
The day before was the Large School Meet. Andover had an outstanding day as Jodi Parrott won the 55-meter hurdles at 8.88 seconds, while Ashley Sheehan was second in the high jump (4-10) and sixth in the 55-meter hurdles (9.98). Finally, Abby Buckley was fourth in the shot put throwing 29-05.25.
The Lowell 4×200 relay team of Rebecca Cady, Casey Mitchell, Bridget Geary and Carleigh Ahern (pictured above) finished fourth at 1:53.93, which broke a Freshman/Sophomore School record.
North Andover’s Karina Yankowsky was fifth in the shot put throwing 29-05.
On the boys side, Owen Phelan of NA was third in the 600 at 1:32.31 Michael Soucy of Methuen was third in the 300 at 38.11 and then joined Aiden Coakley, Ben Daly and Braeden Carter to take sixth place in the 4×200 race.
MATCHUPS FOR THURSDAY’S MVC CHAMPIONSHIP MEET
Central Catholic vs. Lowell*
North Andover vs. Lawrence
Methuen vs. Andover
Billerica vs. Haverhill^
Tewksbury vs. Chelmsford vs. Dracut
North Andover vs. Central Catholic*
Lowell vs. Andover
Haverhill vs. Methuen
Billerica vs. Tewksbury^
Chelmsford vs. Lawrence vs. Dracut
*Indicates large school championship meet
^indicates small school championship meet