Photo: Meggie Macauley’s third place podium finish at the All State Track Meet.
A pair of seniors celebrated their final day as students at Belmont High School with podium performances at the All State Outdoor Track Meet held Saturday, June 4 at Westfield State University.
Luke Peterson used his consistency in jumping long at each big meet while his competitors fell off while benefiting from the fastest tailwind of the day to finish second in the Boys’ Long Jump. Peterson’s 21 foot, 8 1/2 inch leap beat the third place jump of North Andover’s Matthew Manteiga by a 1/4 inch. Newton South’s Anthony DeNitto won the meet with a 23′ 9 1/2″ jump.
The big surprise of the afternoon’s meet was Belmont’s Meggie Macauley. Seed 23rd for the event, Macauley raced in the first of three heats with the slowest qualifying times. Undeterred by her placement in the inaugural heat, Macauley blasted over the ten 30-inch tall hurdles in 1 minute, 5.28 seconds, breaking her school record by 1.2 seconds. And when the second heat finished, Macauley remained in the lead. In the third heat, only Cynthia Aroke of Peabody (who finished 2nd in the 100 hurdles earlier) in 1:02.68 and Shannon Meisberger of Lenox Memorial in 1:04.08 could best Macauley’s time.
“Meggie has excelled from the first opportunity she had to race the 400 hurdles. During her first race this season, she broke the previous school record by approximately two seconds,” said Melissa Glotzbecker, Belmont’s Girls’ Track Head Coach.
“Today Meggie displayed a great deal of grit, determination, and focus on running the third-fastest time of the day. Today was her breakthrough race we knew she was capable of, a result of her hard work and ability to find another gear even when she is most tired,” said Glotzbecker.
High hopes were anticipated for the girls’ 4×400 relay which came into the meet ranked number one in the state. But relays are funny events as many teams will run with less skilled runners to make the finals then change the lineup with speedier runners. In the finals, Belmont’s quartet of Danielle Kelly, MacAulay, Sara Naumann and Julia Cella took 7th, running a second slower than its best time set last week at the Eastern Mass. Division 3.
“Coming into the meet as the number one seed was a lot of pressure on our athletes, but a challenge they were prepared,” said Glotzbecker.
“We are very proud of the girls for placing at the statewide level, especially for being the only team to break the four-minute barrier three times this season. Although I know they were hoping to improve on their performance from last week, they were still able to post their second-best performance of the season,” she said.
Other Belmont tracksters at the All State meet included senior Katrina Rokosz who came in 13th in the javelin with a throw of 108 feet and 6 inches; junior Naumann finishing 16th in the 800 meters in 2:19.81 and sophomore Calvin Perkins in 16th in 51.09 in the 400 meters.
And for two Belmont representatives, the next stop will be the New Balance Outdoor Nationals on June 17-19: Rokosz qualified with an earlier PR of 121′ 1″ while the relay team will compete in the sprint medley relay and the 4×400.