Locals earn trip to NYSPHSAA Division II meet
OLEAN – Dunkirk’s boys’ 4×100-meter relay team did not perform like they did yesterday when they set a school record, but it did not seem to matter much Saturday as the quartet of Miguel Alicea, Jose Morales, Rashad Graham and Nick Barlette punched their ticket to the New York State Public High School Athletic Association Division II Track & Field Championships.
“They’re extremely excited and happy to be going (to the state meet),” Dunkirk coach Kurt Warmbrodt said of Alicea, Morales, Graham and Barlette, who finished first in a time of 44.01 seconds. “And they are very much looking forward to it. They were just a touch slower than Friday, but plenty good enough to get to states.”
The team has been working together since the indoor season and Warmbrodt noted it’s nice to see all of that time spent together and hard work they have put in pay off.
“It’s definitely paid off,” Warmbrodt said. “They’ve had continuous practice all season long and they were undefeated the entire season. Every invitational we went to and every meet, they haven’t lost. But states will be another story.”
Barlette also qualified for states in the 100 after he finished second in a time of 11.18 seconds. Jose Morales was fifth in the same event in a time of 11.42.
In the high jump, Graham finished fourth at 6-feet while he also competed in the 800, where he finished eighth in a time of 54.32.
Elsewhere, the 4×800 relay team of Javier Soto, Ethan Francis, Alec Tomaszewski and Ray Tarnowski finished third in a season-best time of 8:27.80 while Francis was fourth in the 1,600 in a personal-best time of 4:35.23. Javier Soto was 10th in the 1,600 in a time of 4:48.28.
The state meet will be held at North Cicero High School next weekend and Warmbrodt is excited to get to the facility.
“It’s by far the nicest high school stadium in New York state,” Warmbrodt said. “It’s like a (NCAA) Division I college stadium. We were there in 2008, I believe, and they’ve had the state meet there a couple of times.”
Elsewhere, Fredonia’s Matt Civilette missed qualifying for the state meet in the triple jump by four inches, as he finished second to Tapestry Charter’s Dawan Jones.
“The jump he did this year exceeded what he did last year,” Fredonia boys’ coach Bob Ball said. “It just depends year to year what the competition is. At 43-feet, 9-inches, what more can you do. But it would have been nice to have that extra four inches.”
Jones won the event with a leap of 45-2.
“His previous best this year was 42-10 1/2 at Dunkirk last week,” Ball added of Civilette. “He improved a foot from last week, so there were a lot of positives from what he did last Saturday, just the end result wasn’t what we wanted.”
For Silver Creek, Mike Elwell will be going to the state meet in the pole vault after he took the top spot with a height of 14-3.
In the girls meet, Fredonia’s Devin Kowalewski qualified for the state meet in the 100 hurdles after she finished second Saturday in a time of 16.04 seconds.
“Yes, definitely,” Fredonia girls coach Mike Marshall said when asked if Kowalewski was excited to be going to the state meet. “She made the state time on Friday (during preliminaries), but she still had to perform well (Saturday) and she continues to get better and we’re looking for a strong performance at states.”
Also for the Lady Hillbillies, Ally Cobb was fourth in the 400 hurdles in a time of 1:10, Gwen Stokes was sixth in the high jump at 5-feet, Diedra Osula was seventh in the 200 in a time of 26.8 seconds and Courtney Styborski was ninth in the discus with a distance of 92-5.
For Silver Creek, Emma Seiders fourth in the 400 hurdles in a time of 1:00.17 on Saturday after finishing second in the preliminaries Friday night in a time of 1:00.78. Also for the Black Knights, Hannah Seiders qualified for the state meet in the 400 hurdles after a first-place finish in which she crossed the line in a time of 1:04.17.
Dunkirk was led by Samiyha Toomer’s sixth-place finish in the 100, as she crossed the finish line in a time of 12.98 seconds. Also for the Lady Marauders, Faith Rivera finished eighth in the 400 in a time of 1:04.36 and cleared 4-10 in the high jump to tie for 10th place. Rachel Rosas finished seventh in the 2,000 steeplechase in a time of 8:04
“We didn’t have our best day on the track, but we certainly aren’t hanging our heads about our times either,” Dunkirk girls’ coach A.J. Burnside said. “Our underclassmen are already talking about how they want to train this off season, so the itch to come back to this meet is in them. Now is the time to celebrate all our seniors have accomplished and celebrate what the boys’ team still has to run. Watching them break the record and qualify for states was a truly amazing experience.”