LR frosh Kate Hall wins 3 state titles; FA girls also bring home 3

By Wayne E. Rivet

Staff Writer

THREE TIME CHAMP — Laker freshman Kate Hall occupied the state champion spot three times.

LEWISTON — Kate Hall didn’t wilt under the bright lights of her first high school state championship indoor track meet.

She shined.

A freshman, Kate won state titles in the long jump (17-feet 1.5-inches), 55-meter dash (7.27 seconds) and the 200 meters (26.33 seconds) — all Lake Region records.

Meanhile, Fryeburg Academy’s Corinn Bedell, Emily Heggie and the Raider 4x200 relay team also claimed state titles.

Bedell, a senior, won the 400 meters in 59.95, ahead of Waterville’s Olivia Thurston who posted a 59.97.

Heggie, a junior, captured the high jump crown with a leap of 5-feet 2-inches, ahead of Courtney Mailly of Waterville (5-feet).

The FA relay team consisting of Sage Hennessy, Heggie, Nikki Shivers and Bedell rolled out a 1:50.91 to beat the mark of 1:51.03 set by a Waterville foursome.

These high marks enabled the Raiders to place third overall while the Lakers checked in fourth.

Laker report

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TOP 10 GIRLS

Waterville 118

Greely 73.4

Fryeburg Academy 44

Lake Region 33

Winslow 32

Gray-New Gloucester 16

Hermon 15.2

John Bapst 14

Old Town 13.2

Camden Hills 12

Cape Elizabeth 12

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Kate Hall competed in the junior division during the regular season, and the freshman’s talent continued to shine against the top Class B athletes in Maine.

“She hasn’t lost in any event yet this year, but next is the New England meet (at the Reggie Lewis Center in Boston on March 2). It will be interesting to she how she does as she has gotten better and better as the meets have become bigger and bigger,” Lake Region Coach Mark Snow said.

Kate will long jump and run the 55 meters at the New England Championships.

Hoping to join Hall are Hannah Perkins and Jacqui Black.

Perkins finished sixth in the 800 meters (2:31.41, winning time was 2:19.09 set by Bethanie Brown of Waterville) and missed her school record by half a second.

“I think this race was much tougher than her school record run. She had to battle with quite a few athletes to earn that time and her spot on the podium,” Coach Snow said. “Hannah made many tactical decisions on each lap and I agreed with all of them. She ran a great race and is still learning the event. I look forward to her outdoor season, where she can hope to break 2:30.”

Coach Snow said Black also made decisions throughout her race that culminated in a seventh place medal in the mile (5:49.23). Bethanie Brown, a junior from Waterville, set a new state record in 5:02.15, which topped the mark set by Abby Iselborn of McAuley in 2007 at 5:03.47.

“Jacqui is the best female distance runner I’ve coached. I’m so glad she placed (Monday). She made critical moves in the race to break up the pack. Jacqui pushed the pace midway through the race, and it changed the race for herself and her opponents,” Coach Snow said. “Without those moves, I don’t think she would have finished seventh. It’s been great to watch Jacqui dictate what is happening around her the last two meets. She has had a great finish to the season.”

Black was 17th in the two mile with a time of 13:29.29. Brown of Waterville set the winning pace in 10:59.68.

Kristina Morton (3:01.6) ran a personal record split for the 4x800 meter relay team.  Other members were: Maggie Knudsen (3:00.2), Julia Carlson (3:19.4) and Maude Meeker (2:52.9) as the Lakers finished with a time of 12:14.12.

On the boys’ side, Dakota Bush posted a personal record in the 55-meters trials with a 7.04, but missed qualifying for the finals by 0.04 seconds. He placed 17th in the 200 meters in 24.78 (winning time was 23.11).

“Dakota made huge improvement this year,” Coach Snow said. “Dakota did well despite battling a cold. His 200 meter time (24.78) was only a tenth off his personal record.”

Record still intact. Every year, it seems one or more state records fall at the Class B Championships. Kevin Floster’s name, however, remains on the record list for the top time in the 800 meters. The former Laker set the standard at 1:56.12 in 2005. This year’s winner was Nestor Taylor of Greely, who posted a 2:01.42.

The top seven finishers score points and medal.

Raider report

• Sophomore Bailey Friedman scored in the shot put with a fifth place finish after a toss of 31-feet 2.50-inches. Catherine Fellows, a senior from Greely, won the event with a toss of 33-4.50.

Friedman made a big toss for a medal after sitting in eighth place with one attempt left.

“Her practices had been going great and we both knew there was a big throw in her,” FA Coach Kevin McDonald said. “On her last throw, she lets a 31-foot plus go to get to the (trophy) podium. Unbelievable! A personal best on your last throw at States. Wow!”

• FA senior Jamie Gullikson captured second place in the pole vault with a 9-6 effort, behind junior Kayla Marquis of Old Town, who registered a 9-9 vault.

“Jamie jumped very well in the pole vault. We had stressed the importance of jumping clean and she did just that,” Coach McDonald said.

• In the 200-meters, Sage Hennessy was sixth in 27.20 followed by Bedell in 11th at 27.75 and Shivers 12th at 28.09.

• On Corinn Bedell claiming the state title in the 400 meters:

“Corinn became the state champion in the 400 dash in a race for the ages. Trailing early, Corinn started her run for home with about 160 meters to go, moving into second midway on the final curve,” Coach McDonald said. “At this point, Bobby (Coach Collins) and I did not think a win was possible. She was running down the defending state champion, but it looked like she was running out of track. We always said, ‘I would not want to be the girl Corinn was chasing.’ A half a step from the finish line, it was over. Corinn had caught her and gone under a minute for the 400. I don’t think words can describe the joy that was felt at that moment — it was high school sports at its best.”

• On Emily Heggie winning the high jump:

“Again, we had stressed having a jump clean and ‘M’ only had one miss late in the competition,” Coach McDonald said. “It came down to the last two standing and the bar at 5-feet 2-inches, a height neither girl had ever cleared. ‘M’ cleared it on her first attempt and Courtney (Mailly) from Waterville was unable to make the height. Emily was crowned state champion. This could not have happened to a nicer young lady. Emily is a huge asset to our team, and we are very happy for her.”

• On the Raider state champion relay team:

Coaches Collins and McDonald could see in early December that this Raider foursome had something special going.

“Finding the right four girls was a long process and due to injury or illness was still uncertain, even at Bates. It became the race that dreams are made of,” Coach McDonald said. “Waterville — the defending state champs — had posted some very fast times and we prepared the girls for the possibility that they might have to run from behind, something they had not done all year.”

Relay leader Sage Hennessy put that question to rest as “she blazed an opening leg for the ages” giving Emily Heggie a little breathing room, which she maintained as she passed the baton to Nikki Shivers.

“Nikki ran very well and gave Corinn a slight lead. Twice, the girl from Waterville attacked and twice she was held at bay by Corinn,” Coach McDonald said. “The girls ran a new indoor school record and became state champions. There again, it was like a dream. Bobby and I are overjoyed for these young ladies.”

•  Scott Pelkie earned a point with a seventh place in the shot put. Pelkie’s toss went 40-feet 1.25-inches. Nick Margitza of Waterville won the event with a toss of 53-feet 1-inch.

“It was a great day for Scott, one I’m sure he will remember for a long, long time. Hard work all season was rewarded with hardware at States,” Coach McDonald said. “Scott, one of our captains, proved he is a force in the Class B shot put.”

• Devine Dockery was 12th in the 200 meters in 24.59 while Austin Ward finished 29th with a time of 25.56.

“It was Devine’s first State Meet, but it will not be his last. Devine just missed going to the finals in the 55 meters and ran very well in the 200,” Coach McDonald said. “Austin Ward, coming off a long illness, still battled and ran very well in the 200 meters. A few days before States, I thought Austin might be too weak from his illness, but he said ‘I want to run’ and run he did. A great day for Austin at less than 100%.”

Hard work and determination this winter was rewarded with titles and great memories Monday at Bates College.

“This area should be very proud of these young ladies and young men,” Coach McDonald said. “I know Snowman (LR Coach Mark Snow) and I are.”

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