For the Pawling boy's track team, Friday the 11th marked the first of hopefully many League Championship victories to come.
After years of finishing runner-up to teams such as Beacon, Lourdes, Haldane, and Poughkeepsie, the team finally secured its first win and a banner marking their achievement in the Pawling High School gym. Winning by only three points (which is quite a thin margin in the sport of Track and Field), the Tiger's triumph can only be accurately described as a "team-effort."
Matthew Jorgensen, one of the team's leading seniors, claimed gold in the 3200m run, 1600m run, and led his teammates to 1st-place in the 3200m relay, with fellow seniors Mike Konchan, Derick Kowalczyk, and Dylan Smith. Mike Konchan, a two-time returning State Champion, also clinched 1st place and several vital points for the team in the 600m run and 1600m relay with Brandon Capo, Jon Farrell, and Brennen Farrell. Newcomer Ronney Butironi was a pivotal competitor throughout the meet, scoring points in the 300m dash, 600m run, and 800m relay. Also in the relay was fellow junior Mike Fraad, who managed to claim points in the 55m dash as well. Efforts by Brandon Capo and Mikey Slattery were awarded in the 1000m run, where the two swept first and second, greatly increasing the chance of the overall team's success. Outstanding efforts were provided across the board by the younger underclassmen, who have already begun to plan ahead for the departure of this year's seniors. The final score was Pawling with 109 points, followed by their runner-up competitor, Beacon, with 106 points.
Although the Pawling girls are no strangers to victory, there was a great sense of accomplishment last Friday as the girl's team claimed yet another League Championship. Although the long trek to Rockland Community College almost prevented Morgan Meaney and Annie Maguire from competing, the two took first and third in the 1500m race walk. Fiona Espinoza fell just short of first place in the 55m hurdles, but she scored a well-deserved second place in the heavily-competitive event and went on to take third in the girl's shot put. Essential points in the 600m run and 300m dash were scored by senior Megan Wesley. Also in the 600m run, Danielle Heymach claimed second in the event, finishing less than one second behind the winner.
New to the Pawling Tigers this year, Samantha McCarthy took silver in the 1000m run, and continued onward to take bronze in the 1500m run. Alongside McCarthy, Lauren MacNamera also scored points in the 1500m run, while contributing to the team's final score in the 55m hurdles. Sarah Marvin, Morgan Meaney, and up-and-coming freshman Molly Lagone took spots 1 through 3 in the 3000m run, while Antoinette Perpepaj, Kelly Leahy, and Anna Kern each racked up points in the girl's pole vault. Antoinette Perpepaj also scored in the high jump and long jump, where incredible performances earned her two silver medals. Fellow jumper and senior Magdalene Fogarasi captured first in the triple jump and secured vital points in the high jump as well. In all of the relays, the Pawling girls put together dynamite relays that were rewarded with second place medals for all relay participants. The final meet tally was Pawling in first with 164 points, and second place Hendricks Hudson with 142. These girls have set quite a precedent for future generations of Pawling runners to follow.
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