ORONO – With three regular-season meets remaining until the Penobscot Valley Conference championships, Orono High track and field coach Chris Libby says his teams still have lots of work to do.
“We need to do more work on relays, and field events, we haven’t had a lot of time to do technique because of weather,” Libby said after his Orono boys won a multi-team meet at home against Old Town, Bucksport, George Stevens of Blue Hill, and Stearns of Millinocket.
The two-time defending PVC Class C champs finished with 124.5 points and Old Town was second with 116. George Stevens came in third (67), Bucksport fourth (44.5), and Stearns fifth (14).
The Coyotes dominated the girls meet, posting 163 points to runner-up Orono’s 121. Bucksport was third (50) and GSA fourth (19).
In the girls meet, the Coyotes got two individual victories apiece from Hilary Maxim, Samantha Kitchen, Heather Jackson and Bianca Moore en route to their team triumph.
Maxim’s efforts of 5 minutes, 23.83 seconds in the 1,600 and 11:40.36 in the 3,200 were well within range of the junior’s goals for the weekend, Old Town coach Rod White said.
“Hilary had goals for 5:20 and 11:40, and she got 5:23 and 11:40, so that’s pretty good,” he said.
Old Town’s Eliza Tibbits came in second in both races, in 5:51.67 and 12:16.44, respectively, and White said, “Eliza is still trying to get under 12.”
“They’re both on pace,” he added.
Kitchen, who has improved vastly since winning the long jump in the EMITL championships last winter, posted a solid 14 feet, 8 1/4 inches to capture the long jump and added a 29-5 1/2 effort to win the shot put.
Kitchen will be a solid asset to the Coyotes in the long run, White said, if she can stay healthy.
“She’s had injuries and sore legs and stuff. When she’s healthy, she’s [usually] doing pretty well,” he said.
Like all other teams in Eastern Maine this spring, Old Town has been scrambling to get its meets in, with the weather postponing several early-season meets.
“We lost our first meet [and] had one postponed last Friday [April 27],” White said. “As long as we don’t have any more we’ll be all right.”
White said he’ll be able to tell how his team is progressing in its next two meets, against a young, talented Brewer team then against always-tough Hampden.
“They’ve [Brewer] had two pretty good meets so far, so it’ll be a good matchup for my girls,” the coach said. “Then we’ve got Hampden the following Tuesday, another good matchup for the girls. If we get through those two meets and do well, we’ll be able to tell from there.”
Jackson’s two individual victories came in the triple jump (31-4 1/2) and pole vault (9-0) while Moore took the 1,600 racewalk in 11:27.48 and the javelin with a heave of 94-0.
Orono’s Chelsea Wagner also won two individual events, taking the 100-meter hurdles in 17.88 and later winning the 300 hurdles in 51.27.
In the boys meet, Orono had individual victories in five events, two of which came from James Berry in the hurdles, and Libby’s club has solid depth in the sprinting and technique events.
While he did not clear a height in the pole vault, Berry posted solid times of 16.37 and 43.43 in the 110 and 300 hurdles, respectively.
“I thought he ran a great 300- meter hurdle race today,” Libby said. “He attacked all the hurdles and looked pretty good.”
Libby said Berry has “only picked up a pole maybe four times this year,” adding that he was sick at the end of last week and that the weather conditions this spring have prevented him from vaulting a lot in practice.
“He’s got a little work to do, but he’ll come around,” Libby said.
Orono’s other individual winners were Matt Claar in the 400 in 56.14 and Matthieu Nadeau’s 11:18.65 finish in the 3,200.
Claar teamed up with Collin Bates, Levi Ashley and Matt Baker on the 4×400 relay to record a winning time of 3:51.17.
Brandon Gastia and Sam Petrie each won a pair of individual events for Old Town.
Gastia took the long jump with a leap of 19-10 and later won the triple jump in 40-51/2.
Petrie won the high jump (6-0) and pole vault (12-0).
David Falls won an exciting 1,600-meter race for the Coyotes, passing Orono’s Brandon Paul in the last 200 meters and holding him off down the homestretch to win in 5:13.87. Paul finished second in 5:13.91.
George Stevens’ Addison Pellerano cruised to victory in the 800 in 2:05.16, while teammate Brandon Rafferty turned in an outstanding day with wins in the javelin (139-9), discus (111-9), and shot put (40-71/2).
Bucksport’s Matt Perkins took the 100 (12.22) and 200 meters (25.01).