Tori Spencer, left, of Monmouth Academy and Sydney Douglass of Lisbon High School compete during the 1600 meter racewalk during the MVC Championships in Lisbon on Thursday. Douglass passed Spencer on the final corner to win the event. Spencer came in second.
LISBON — The Monmouth girls and Lisbon boys entered Thursday’s Mountain Valley Conference track and field championships as the teams to beat.
Monmouth coach Tom Menendez pointed out before the meet that the Mustangs’ recent history shows that being the favorite doesn’t mean much. Two years ago, they won when they weren’t expected to, and last year they fell short when they probably should have won.
The Mustangs followed through in 2017, racking up 164.5 points and beating second-place Lisbon by a decisive 65.5 points.
“They call came right in where we expected them, and there some a little bit better,” Mendendez said.
The Lisbon boys also followed through not only on their expectations but also on more than a decade of tradition, winning their 12th consecutive MVC boys championship by beating Hall-Dale by 14 points, 119-105. Mountain Valley was third with 85 points.
“I don’t like to lose,” Lisbon’s Kurtis Bolton said.
Bolton is part of a group of seniors who finish a career sweep of MVC championships, winning every year from 2014-2017.
“We worked hard all season,” Bolton said. “A lot of kids take these championships for granted, especially younger kids, freshman and sophomores, don’t really understand how hard the juniors and seniors have worked to keep this stuff going for 12 years.
“This takes a lot of work. These younger kids don’t see it, but as a senior group, as a whole, we know what it takes. I’m proud of everybody over there.”
Bolton ran a leg of the championship-sealing 4×400-meter relay, along with Morgan Perron, Dylan George and Bryant Hall. The Greyhounds had an eight-point lead over Hall-Dale before the meet’s final event, then went out and added to their lead by finishing first with a nearly seven-second cushion over second-place Boothbay.
Michael Schlotterbeck, also a senior, earned the 1,600 racewalk championship for Lisbon.
“Twelfth in a row,” Greyhounds coach Dean Hall said. “I’ve pondered it. I think there’s kind of a feeling that you don’t want to be the team that breaks the streak . I’m not sure if it’s that’s true or not, but I think there’s an element to it. They start early and they see seniors acting a certain way, and they take on that same responsibility … when they’re seniors.”
The Monmouth girls won six events. Freshman Kaitlyn Hunt was part of three of those, and earned the girls’ co-Athlete of the Meet award, sharing the honor with Lisbon’s Sydney Douglass.
Hunt took first in the 1,600 and 3,200, and joined her sister Abbie Hunt, Audrey Fletcher and Danielle Parker in winning the 4×800 relay.
Hunt admitted having some anxiety about what she called her first “big track meet.”
“I feel really good about it, because I was really nervous coming in,” Kaitlyn Hunt said. “I was seeded first in the mile and the 2-mile, but I wasn’t sure about it, and I just wanted to get in first/
The Mustangs other wins were Libby Clement in the 300 hurdles, Maddie Amero in the javelin and Mahala Hayden in the discus.
“I’m just speechless,” Hayden, a junior, said. “It’s been my high school goal to stand at the top of the podium.”
Hayden and Amero are part of a strong crew of throwers that includes Abbey Allen and Destiny Clough. They finished first through fourth in the javelin, had three top-five showings in the discus and two top-fives in the shot put.
“We’ve got depth at almost every event, and we spread ourselves well at every event,” Menendez said. “One through four (in javelin), discus we had three, shot put we had two, mile we had two, 2-mile we had two, hurdles we had two in every one. So, we’ve got some good spread.”
Douglass won two events for the Greyhounds, including an exciting showdown in the girls’ 1,600 racewalk with Monmouth’s Tori Spencer.
Spencer has owned their previous matchups, including winning by 15 seconds at Lisbon last week. On Thursday, Douglass stayed on Spencer’s heels until passing her at the final turn and pulling away to win by nine seconds and set a new school record.
“I’ve always been probably like 15 meters behind her, I would say. So I had doubt in my head going into it,” Douglass said. “And then, at the beginning, I was right with her, so I knew I could do it.”
Douglass also took first in the 800. Alika McMurrin earned Lisbon another individual title by winning the girls’ shot put.
Telstar Kaitlee Killam entered Thursday as the reigning MVC sprint champion, having won the girls’ 100 and 200 and last year’s conference meet.
The sophomore defended both titles, but she wasn’t expecting either.
“It was crazy. It was a great feeling,” Killam said. “I didn’t think I was going to get it, because I haven’t been doing my best this year. I didn’t have much confidence.”
Similar story for Mountain Valley’s Elijah Turner. He won the boys’ 100 at the 2016 meet, but wasn’t expecting to do likewise this year because Boothbay’s Draco Peaslee kept beating him this year.
Turner, though, outran Peaslee by 16-hundreths Thursday.
“He beat me twice already,” Turner said. “Going into it, I thought I was going to lose, honestly. But, I don’t know, it was a good race, it felt good.”
Peaslee did end up winning the boys’ 200.
Telstar’s Avry Griffin defended both of his titles, winning the boys’ 110 and 300.
“It was probably the best run I’ve ever had (in the 100 hurdles),” Griffin said. “It just felt smooth the whole way through, and my time showed it.”
Mountain Valley’s Lauren Sterling also defended her 100 hurdles title by beating out a stacked field that included Wiscasset’s Ayanna Stover (who took second), Lisbon’s Chase Collier (third) and Monmouth’s Emily Grandahl (fourth) and Clement (fifth), the winner of the 100 hurdles.
Kyle Farrar of Mountain Valley defended his long jump championship and added a triple jump title to his list of accomplishments, which includes a long jump runner-up at the 2016 state outdoor meet and an indoor long jump championship earlier this year.
“I did good today,” Farrar said. “I hit marks where I wanted to.
“Definitely where I wanted to be.”
Despite having to compete in the long jump finals and triple jump at the same time — going from one pit to the other in between jumps — Farrar set a personal record in the triple jump with a 43-01.
Farrar also teamed with Elijah Turner, Jasper Turner and Nate White to give the Falcons’ the 4×100 relay title.
Dirigo’s Dalton Berry also was a double winner. He took first in the shot put and the discus.
“I could have done better (in the shot put),” Berry said. “I’ve thrown 45-06 this year, and I was looking to hit 46. I don’t know what was wrong, I just couldn’t hit it today.”
Berry’s best through Thursday was 44-09.5.
His teammate Hunter White won the 400 championship.
“You’ve to to leg it out and be moving your legs quick during the last like 100 meters,” White said.
Another double winner was Jon Whitcomb of Hall-Dale, who earned the boys’ Athlete of the Meet by winning the high jump and the pole vault. He tied a 32-year MVC meet record with a high jump of 6-04.
Kinlee DiBiase was part of two wins for the Winthrop girls. Individually, she claimed the 400 championship, and finishing the meet by running with Jillian Taylor, Shie Smith and Kena Souza in the Ramblers’ first-place 4×400 relay.
Evan Burnell, Dylan Goff, Kyle Gunnells and Dylan Lajoie had the Monmouth’s boys’ lone title in the 4×800 relay.
Emily Grandahl of Monmouth Academy competes during the triple jump during the MVC Championships in Lisbon on Thursday.
Kyle Farrar of Mountain Valley High School competes during the long jump during the MVC Championships in Lisbon on Thursday.
Ben Blake of Lisbon High School clears 5″ 4″ during the high jump during the MVC Championships in Lisbon on Thursday.
Scottie Dunn of Winthrop High School lands during the long jump during the MVC Championships in Lisbon on Thursday.
Dalton Berry of Dirigo High School throws the shot put during the MVC Championships in Lisbon on Thursday.
Zach Duguay of Mountain Valley High School throws the shot put during the MVC Championships in Lisbon on Thursday.