LEWISTON — It was close — until the fifth completed event of the morning.
And then, just like in every regular-season track and field meet in which Edward Little has been entered in recent memory, the Red Eddies poured it on. And on, and on, and on.
Senior Katherine Harmon led the way for the Edward Little girls, collecting wins in the shot put, discus and triple jump, and sophomore Jaclyn Masters bested a nine-year-old school record in the pole vault in the day’s final event to lead the Eddies to a convincing 138½-81 victory over Bangor in the inaugural River City Rivalry meet at Lewiston High School.
“There were so many surprises for us today,” EL coach Rebecca Hefty said. “Never would we have thought to go 2-3-4 in the 200, or to sweep the top four in the shot put. We had a lot of girls setting a lot of personal best times and distances today.”
By vanquishing three more opponents, the Eddies ran their consecutive regular-season meet win streak to 190.
Not to be outdone, the boys’ extended to 141 their own record with a 108½-76½ win over Bangor.
“It was a solid day all around,” EL boys’ coach Ryan Laroche said. “We had a good, all-around meet, where we had improvements across the board.”
Leading the way for EL was triple event-winner Ricardo Hairston, who stood atop the podium in the high jump (5 feet, 10 inches), long jump (19 feet, 8¾ inches) and triple jump (42 feet, 9¾ inches).
Not bad, for an athlete who’d never stepped foot on a track before this spring.
“I like how the team pushes me; it helps me go far,” Hairston said. “When I see competition, I go harder. If nobody was jumping 41, I wouldn’t have been able to do it. It gives me a goal.”
Hairston said the reason to participate in the sport this spring was purely for something to do.
“I wish I would have thought about doing it earlier,” he said.
Edward Little had a host of top finishes Saturday. On the boys’ side, the 3,200-meter relay and 400-meter relay took home top honors, Keith Tremblay placed first in the racewalk and in the javelin, Jeremy Theriault won the 1,600 and Faisal Noor topped the 3,200.
Harmon’s performances sparked the girls’ squad.
“We changed our philosophy, and I’m doing more with sprint mechanics,” Harmon said. “It helps so much to use that in throwing, and I never had thought about that before.”
“She’s the kind of athlete, she can over think things, and with her, it was more about simplifying things, and just having her go out and do it, and not think so much,” Hefty said.
Harmon’s win in the triple jump was just the tip of the iceberg for the embarrassingly deep Eddies, who also placed second, third, fourth and fifth to sweep the points in the event. In the shot put, EL went 1-2-3-4, and took the top two in the discus.
And while the Eddies had just about conceded the top spot in the 200, earning a 2-3-4 finish was icing on the cake.
Other winners for the Eddies on the day included the squad’s 3,200- and 400-meter relays, Abby Dunn in the racewalk and Masters in the pole vault.
Masters’ height in the pole vault was 10-feet, 1-inch, one inch better than Meghan Kohlmeyer’s mark of 10-feet even set in 2001, and it also came on a day during which she ran her first competitive 200-meter dash (she placed second).
“It’s just a great ending to a great day for the team,” Hefty said. “For her to be able to do that, that was just awesome.”
Lewiston’s highlights included Nicole Court-Menendez placing second in the racewalk and Maame Bonsu’s second-place finish in the high jump and victory in the long jump.
On the boys’ side, Hussein Ibrahim placed third in the mile, Kyle Rousseau finished second in the 400, Faisal Abdillahi earned a win in the 800, Derrick Roy placed second to Hairston in the long jump and Rudy Pandora swiped second in the shot put ahead of a pair of EL throwers.
The meet itself was the brainchild of Lewiston assistant Jamerson Crowley. Traditionally, Edward Little and Lewiston compete in one meet each season, typically near the end.
Crowley, who once coached at Brewer, understood the rivalry that existed not only between the two L-A schools, but between Bangor and Brewer, and hatched his idea.
“Not only have you seen these rivalries develop over the years, but all four of these schools have developed rivalries in other sports, and there was never really anything for track,” Crowley said. “This was a great way to do this.”
“Jamerson deserves all of the credit for this,” Laroche said. “This is just fantastic for everyone involved, and we would never have gotten the chance to all be in the same place at the same time otherwise.”
Next week, Bangor and Brewer will again battle it out for the PVC crown, while the Devils and Eddies will participate in the KVAC meet, and all four schools will see each other one more time at the Class A state meet in two weeks.