AUGUSTA — It was their expectation and their desire. It was what pushed them and pulled them all year long. It was what motivated them and had them settling for nothing less Friday.
With five straight wins in the Mountain Valley Conference Track Championships. the Lisbon track team wanted to make sure it extended that streak a little further. Friday, the Greyhounds did just that in convincing fashion.
Lisbon completed an impressive sweep of the MVC championships to claim a sixth straight win for both the boys’ and girls’ teams
“We were expecting big things,” said senior Tara Metzger. “As seniors, we didn’t want to disappoint. We didn’t want this to be the only year we didn’t win. So we were really motivated to come in here and win.”
The girls finished with 130¾ points, beating out Monmouth with 66 and Winthrop with 62¾. Madison was fourth (59¾) followed by Livermore Falls (55).
The Lisbon boys finished with 112½. Winthrop was second with 80 while Monmouth was third at 75. The top five was rounded out by Livermore Falls (64) and Boothbay (55½).
“I had the boys going in at 115,” said veteran Lisbon coach Dean Hall. “So we’re not too far off. The girls, I have a little bit higher, but it’s pretty much what we thought.”
Considering the pressure to repeat and the challenges of this season, another Lisbon sweep was remarkable. Hall commends the dedication of his athletes and the work of his assistant coaches, Hank Fuller, Doug Sautter and Dan Sylvester.
“They’re hard working kids,” Hall said. “They’ve devoted a lot of time. They’re top 10 kids and they’re kids that struggle with grades. They all have to put the time in.”
Friday’s warm temperatures were a challenge. After a season that had the athletes working in the gym more than they were outside, the sudden blast of heat made it difficult.
“This was brutal,” Hall said. “This was the worst training season of all time, in 33 years of coaching.”
Morgan Reeves led the boys’ team and said he struggled with the heat. He still won the long jump, the triple jump and the pole vault.
“I had a lot of high hopes that I was going to do good,” Reeves said. “I wish I could have done better. The sun really saps the energy out of you. You could see it in everybody.”
Reeves won the triple with a jump of 40 feet, 8 inches and took the pole vault with a height of 12-0 despite a challenge from Madison’s Kyle Foley, who improved his best height by a foot. Reeves biggest test came in the long jump. He won with a distance of 20-3 but got pushed by Hall-Dale’s Tyler Fitzgerald.
“The last couple of jumps I just pushed and tried my hardest,” Reeves said. “It was that passion of wanting to beat that guy.”
The Greyhounds boys had a number of fine finishes. Kyle Sheehan took second and third in the hurdle events. Ben Kates (race walk), Quincy Thompson (triple jump) and Seth Boucher (800) all placed third. Zach Splude was fourth in the 100 and fifth in the 200. Shane Tanguay (long jump), John Melnick (javelin) each finished fourth, while Tayler Bard (race walk) added a fifth-place finish.
“We had kids missing, and we had to have kids step up,” Hall said. “In a track meet, if the door is open, you have to step through.”
On the girls’ side, Metzger placed in the top three in three events. She won the triple jump at 33-0 and was second in the long jump and third in the 200.
“I did pretty decent in the triple,” said Metzger. “The finals were right after the 200. So I was beat after that, but my first jumps were good enough.”
Metzger had a little extra motivation to succeed. Her older brother Eric was part of the boys’ team that won four straight MVC titles during his high school career.
“My brother is two years older than me,” she said. “So his class was the first one to win all four years. So I kind of wanted to carry that on.”
The girls’ team also received a pair of wins from Briana Moore in the discus and the shot put. Her discus distance was 88-6 while she won the shot with a throw of 33-5. Erin Marquis also added a win in the pole vault with a height of 6-0.
Lisbon had Angelica Bulgin take second in the javelin while Kayla Angelico took third. Lindsey Whitney was second in the race walk, while Olivia Bulgin was fourth. Kaitlyn Doustou took third in the high jump while Gabby Ouellette (long jump) and Jordan Kates (discus) each added a fifth-place finish.
Also in the girls’ meet, Mt. Abram’s Sadie James had a pair of wins in the 1,600 and the 3,200. Monmouth’s Danielle Bumman won both hurdles events and teammate Melissa Brassard was second in the 100 hurdles. Winthrop’s Karen Rice won the 100 while Livermore Falls got a win from Lindsey Jacques in the long jump.
Livermore Falls had a number of winners in the boys’ meet. Thomas Bizier won the 110 hurdles, while Ethan Hutchins took second. Hutchins then won the 300 hurdles. Jacob Freeman added a win in the high jump for the Andies.
Other winners included St. Dom’s Patrick LaChance in the race walk, Monmouth’s Kevin Desmond in the 800 and Mountain Valley’s John Durland won the javelin. Winthrop got a win in the discus from Travis Hutchins.