GORHAM — In a day which saw multiple state records fall at the State Class A Indoor Track Championships, one thing remained the same. For the eighth straight year, the Scarborough girls were crowned champions. For the third time in four years, the Red Storm boys rode the buses home with the first-place crown as well.
The Red Storm girls needed a third-place or better finish in the 4×200 relay, the final event of the day. They also had to hope the unseeded Thornton girls wouldn’t sneak into the scoring. While the Trojans’ relay squad finished well back, the Red Storm group turned in a state record. They finished the race in a time of 1:48.13.
Scarborough finished with 66 points with Thornton (61.5) and Bangor (47) coming in second and third. The Edward Little girls placed eighth with 28 points. The Scarborough boys also needed a last-second victory in the 4×200 relay to edge Deering by a 46-45 margin. Lewiston finished in sixth place with 33 points, while Edward Little came in eighth with 25½.
The Red Storm and Red Eddies girls’ relay squads put together quite a race to end the day. The Red Storm led heading into the third leg of the race, but EL’s Jaclyn Masters ripped off perhaps her best 200 leg of the season. As she hit the far turn, she was in third. By the time she reached her end of the leg, she had moved her team from third to first. That sudden movement also caused the Red Eddies some misfortune. At the baton handoff to Avery Chisholm, the Red Eddies’ anchor stumbled out of her start.
“I was in second at the turn,” said Masters who earlier finished second in the 55-meter dash and third in the pole vault. “When I pulled ahead, they don’t change the lanes. I had to come over and when Avery came out, she tripped. It was a bummer.”
From there it was all Red Storm as anchor leg runner Nicole Kirk ran without looking back. Edward Little ended up third.
“It was really nerve wracking,” Kirk said. “I wanted to turn around and see how close they were.”
Brunswick Alexis Dickinson captured the 55-meter dash in 7.22 seconds to set a new state record. Multiple winners were Cheverus’ Fiona Hendry, who won both distance races while Sarah Perkins of Gorham won three events. Perkins won the 55-meter hurdles (8.55) and the 400 dash (58.23) before narrowly missing a state mark in the 200 (25.82). In the 200, she had to catch and pass Dickinson at the far turn and held on before collapsing on the track.
“It feels like I can’t feel my legs,” Perkins said. “I’m very excited. When I see someone in front of me, I want to beat them. I just started pumping my arms and took off. I won it on that corner. It didn’t hurt to have my teammates cheering me on at that corner.”
EL’s Lexi Clavet provided the only other points for her team. She finished second in the triple jump.
Connor Harris turned in a pair of wins for the Red Eddies’ boys. The junior won the triple jump (44-5) for the second straight year and added the high jump (6-0) to his list of crowns. He also finished fifth in the long jump.
“I kind of expected to get at least one win.” said Harris. “There was a lot of competition. When you see totally new faces, there’s a whole new adrenaline because you don’t know what the others are going to do.”
Perhaps the most impressive race of the day was the two mile. After comfortably winning the mile in a time of 4:26.37, Messalonskee’s Harlow Ladd focused on the two mile with a goal of setting the state record. His seed time was just shy of the mark, but he had no one to push him. Ladd quickly raced to the front and continued to methodically pull away, nearly lapping the field twice.
He picked up his speed at the bell lap and as he surged down the stretch, he began to sprint. After crossing the finish line with a new state record (9:21.87), he fell on the track and had to be quickly helped out of the way by his teammates.
“It was not easy,” Ladd said. “With three laps to go, I thought I was going to pass out. That’s the most pain I’ve ever felt. I wanted to get that record.”
Winning the race for second in the two mile was Lewiston’s Mohamed Barre, who finished 40 seconds behind Ladd and out-kicked three other runners at the wire. Barre also took third in the mile.
“My coach (taught) me to take it around at five flat,” Barre said. “I gave it my best in the last lap.”
Among the other local competitors scoring were Lewiston’s Rudy Pandora who finished second in the shot put, Mostafa Elfaham who placed third in the long jump and the Lewiston 4×800 relay team (fifth place).
Noble’s Ethan Beaulier won the 55-meter dash (6.61) and the 200 (23.12).