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Boys track looks for another NCCC Tournament championship

CANTON, April 6 – There were some stellar performances last spring from the athletes at Canton High. The baseball, softball and golf programs were hit hard by graduation and will be reloading this spring. The tennis teams do return some experienced personnel and look to improve as does the young girls lacrosse program and the girls track team.

The one program with a shot at a league championship is the boys track and field squad, a team filled with athletes who have won five straight NCCC Tournament championships in cross country, indoor track and outdoor track and have captured and the last two NCCC cross country and indoor track titles.

A year ago, Canton lost its opportunity to win the NCCC track and field championship by dropping four dual meets. But they rebounded with an outstanding performance at the NCCC championship meet, winning it for the first time by 19.5 points over Ellington. Canton won five events that day, swept the top three spots in the long jump and had 16 athletes place in the top five of their respective events.

Many of those athletes are back including senior David Kucia, who won two NCCC titles in the hurdles and has developed into an all-around athlete. He will compete in the CIAC decathlon at the end of the season.

Sprinter Kyle Hall returns along with cross country veterans Nick Chekas, Jon Cahill, Jon Melite, Ned Furtney, Peter LeDuc, Kevin Kurnat and Jon Powell. Kurnat won the 1,000 meters at the NCCC indoor track championships.

Senior Dylan Smith won the shot at the NCCC indoor meet and will anchor a strong field squads for the Warriors this spring.

With 36 boys and 10 seniors, track has the largest team on campus this spring, Coach Mike Hughes has plenty of athletes to fill out events. The question will be if Canton can score enough in the field events in dual meets and the league meet since they don’t have any field equipment to practice on.

But it’s not a new challenge for the Warriors.

 

GIRLS TRACK: Canton doesn’t have enough athletes to be a threat as a team but they do return some experienced athletes in Shiny Douglas, Jessica Chance, Jamie Haberern and Camila Rich. Douglas is a sprinter while Rich is a hurdler, who was eighth in the 110 high hurdles at last year’s NCCC championships. Chance was ninth in the 800 at the NCCC meet while Haberern was 11th in the long jump. Mike Hughes is coaching the girls team.

Gerry deSimas, Jr., is the editor and founder of The Collinsville Press. He is an award-winning writer and has been covering sports in Connecticut and New England for more than 30 years. He was inducted into the New England High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2018.

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