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Team effort helps Avon girls track capture first-ever state championship by 1 point

Avon's Carly Regalado took second in the 400 meter hurdles at the Irv Black Invitational.

Senior Carly Regalado became the first Avon High athlete to win a state championship in hurdles at Wednesday’s Class MM championship meet.

MIDDLETOWN, June 1 – For the first time, the Avon High girls track and field team had two individual champions at Wednesday’s Class MM championship meet. The Falcons took home the state championship because they had athletes up and down the lineup do their best and earn crucial points.

Avon captured its first ever state championship in girls track with a one-point win over Nonnewaug, 61-60 with Jonathan Law and Berlin right there with 59 points. The Falcons clinched the championship by finishing sixth in the 4×400 relay with a season-best time of 4:15.39.

By finishing sixth, Avon earned three points to beat the Chiefs by one. But Avon only beat Branford by 0.06 of a second. If they had lost that race, they could have finished tied for the title.

Avon picked up crucial extra points all over the field. Junior Olivia Hyun came in eighth in the javelin – picking up one point. Avon’s 4×800 relay finished fourth with a time of 10:22.18, beating East Lyme, which finished fifth, by 0.33 of a second. The relay team knocked off an incredible 14.7 seconds off their previous best time. Sophomore Audrey Worth leapt a season-best 9-0 feet to take fifth in the pole vault.

Sophomore Riley Abate was fifth in the 100 meters with a time of 12.80 seconds, beating two runners that finished tied for sixth by just 0.04 of a second. Abate was the anchor runner on the 4×100 relay team that was third, just 0.43 seconds ahead of East Haven in four place. All of these little victories provided Avon with additional points that helped them capture a state championship.

“I am still in shock,” Avon head coach Al Dadario said. “We have a great group of coaches that put their heart and soul into their work. We planned the meet to perfection, placing the kids in events we thought  they could score.

“This was a team effort. No one gave up,” he said. “It was a great day for Avon track.”

Avon's Kaleigh Sherman has been throwing the javelin for just five weeks and broke the 23-year-old school record.

Avon’s Kaleigh Sherman got her chance to throw the javelin as a senior. She won a Class MM state championship on Wednesday.

The Avon High boys also had a tremendous day. Geoff Kirk became Avon’s first individual state champion in 16 years by winning the discus. He also took second in the shot put and javelin to lead Avon to a seventh place finish – its best finish since taking seventh in Class M more than 20 years ago in 1995.

The Avon girls wouldn’t have been in contention without their two state championship performers. Senior Carly Regalado won the 300 hurdles in 47.43 seconds and senior Kaleigh Sherman broke her own school record to win the javelin with a throw of 127 feet, 11 inches.

Regalado turned in her fastest time of the year to beat East Haven’s Hailey Onoratio by 0.48 of a second to win in the 300 hurdles. What is the difference between first and second place? Two points. Regalado becomes the first hurdler in Avon High history (boys or girls) to win a state championship.

Regalado also picked up some crucial points in the 100 hurdles. In qualifying, she tied the existing school record of 16.19 set by Aimee Korch at the 2000 NCCC championships. In the final, Regalado finished fifth in 16.33 seconds – her second-fastest time of the year in the event.

Sherman began throwing the javelin for the first time this spring for the Falcons and has improved her throws in each meet except one. Sherman beat her nearest competitor by more than 13 feet. Her throw of 127-11 exceeded the mark she set against Farmington in May (125-2).

Avon’s 4×100 meter relay team (Shilpa Donde, Carly Carpino, Gina Lindley, Abate) finished third with a time of 50.51, just 0.11 a second off the school record they set a week ago at the CCC Central championship meet.

The 4×400 relay team (sophomore Anya Ek, freshman Alyssa Crawford, Donde, Regalado) was sixth in 4:15.39, the fastest time of the season and 3.19 seconds better than they ran a week ago at the CCC Central meet.

Avon junior Madison Sides, sophomore Ashley Martin, junior Christina Martin and senior Ryley Higgins finished fourth in the 4×800 relay.

Higgins took third in the 3,200 meters while Christina Martin was seventh. Carly Carpino was third in the long jump with a leap of 16-3 feet, just a half-inch better than the fourth place finisher from Fitch, worth an extra point for Avon.

Windsor, the two-time defending Class MM champion, moved up to Class L where they won another state championship.

Avon senior Geoff Kirk won a Class MM state title in the discus.

Avon senior Geoff Kirk won a Class MM state title in the discus.

On the boys side, with a win in the discus, Kirk became the first Avon boy to win a state title since Adam Blankenbicker won his second straight Class M pole vault championship in 2000.

Kirk also was second in the shot with a throw of 48-8 feet, second behind North Haven’s Shane O’Connor (51-5) and second in the javelin with a throw of 159-04, second behind North Haven’s Anthony Valentino (161-01).

Freshman Marek Cierniewski took third in the javelin with a throw of 153-9. Andrew Suter finished sixth in the 3,200 meters in 10:08.85 and Andrew Blackmore was 11th in the 100 meters with a time of 11.66 seconds.

2016 Class MM championships
At Middletown

GIRLS

Team results  1. Avon, 61; 2. Nonnewaug, 60; 3. Jonathan Law and Berlin, 59; 5. Branford, 51; 6. Joel Barlow, 45; 7. Fitch, 35; 8. Sacred Heart Academy, 34.50; 9. East Haven and Lauralton Hall, 30, 11. East Lyme 27, 12. Sheehan 25 ½, 13. Hillhouse 24, 14. Brookfield 22½, 15. Woodstock Academy 21½. 16. Platt High 17, 17. Bacon Academy 16, 18. Ledyard. Bethel, Torrington 15, 21. RHAM 11, 22. New Fairfield 9, 23. Fermi 8, 24. Foran 6, 25. Bullard Havens 5

Individual results
100: 1. Kathryn Kelly, Lauralton Hall, 12.35; 2. Kiara Smith, Law, 12.44; 3. Madison Powe, Fitch, 12.61; 4. Autumn Jones, Bullard-Havens, 12.73; 5. Riley Abate, Avon, 12.80; 6. Bridget Lalonde, RHAM, 12.84; 19. Gina Lindley, Avon, 13.52

200: 1. Kiara Smith, Law, 25.66; 2. Grace Blackwell, Barlow, 25.68; 3. Jessica Centore, Law, 25.93; 4. Bridget Lalonde, RHAM, 26.40; 5. Megan Kikosicki, East Haven, 26.69; 6. Destiny Howell, Bethel, 26.79; 10. Riley Abate, Avon, 26.92 (season-low)

400: 1. Grace Blackwell, Barlow, 57.81; 2. Jessica Centore, Law, 59.88; 3. Emily Wielk, Sacred Heart, 1:00.16; 4. Nicole Xiarhos, Berlin, 1:01.10; 5. Melissa Evans, New Fairfield, 1:01.21; 6. Maddie Burns, Sheehan, 1:01.28; 19. Aiyssa Crawford, Avon, 1:04.95

800: 1. Megan Brawner, Ledyard, 2:22.49; 2. Jody DiCicco, Berlin, 2:23.31; 3. Anne Cunningham, Sacred Heart, 2:23.93; 4. Alicia Moroyoqui, Fitch, 2:24.39; 5. Cyrene Nicholas, Branford, 2:27.01; 6. Katherine Hageman, Bacon Academy, 2:27.04; 13. Madison Sides, Avon, 2:41.17

1,600: 1. Mary Bibbey, Nonnewaug, 5:05.97; 2. Jody DiCicco, Berlin, 5:10.83; 3. Cyrene Nicholas, Branford, 5:22.59; 4. Megan Brawner, Ledyard, 5:23.81; 5. Sydney Nash, Fermi, 5:31.70; 6. Sylvia Lawrence, Woodstock Academy, 5:37.24; 16. Rachel Martin, Avon, 5:56.92; 19. Ashley Martin, Avon, 6:23.57

3,200: 1. Mary Bibbey, Nonnewaug, 11:10.95; 2. Jody DiCicco, Berlin, 11:32.59; 3. Ryley Higgins, Avon, 11:54.01; 4. Sylvia Lawrence, Woodstock Academy, 11:57.52; 5. De’Janay Davis, Hillhouse, 12:11.80; 6. Sarah Woodward, Nonnewaug, 12:13.16; 13. Rachel Martin, Avon, 12:57.47

100 hurdles: 1. Hailey Onorato, East Haven, 15.31; 2. Kamrin Dawkins, Platt, 15.47; 3. Claira Janover, Branford, 16.01; 4. Haley Ashton, East Lyme, 16.17; 5. Carly Regalado, Avon, 16.33; 6. Mai Le Meur, Lauralton Hall, 16.51; 10. Hayley Dougela, Avon, 17.53

300 hurdles: 1. Carly Regalado, Avon, 47.43; 2. Hailey Onorato, East Haven, 47.91; 3. Isabelle Riker, East Lyme, 49.56; 4. Kaylen Luu, Bethel, 49.98; 5. Isabel Bysiewicz, Branford, 50.85; 6. Kamrin Dawkins, Platt, 51.00; 12. Hayley Dougela, Avon, 52.05

4×100 relay: 1. Berlin (Nicole Xiarhos, Taylor Budney, Hannah Schulz, Sarah Daddario), 49.71; 2. Jonathan Law, 50.44; 3. Avon (Shilpa Donde, Carly Carpino, Gina Lindley, Riley Abate), 50.51; 4. East Haven, 50.94; 5. Fitch, 51.15; 6. Bethel, 51.70

4×400: 1. Sacred Heart Academy (Isabela Blackwell, Anne Cunningham, Johannah Litchfield, Emily Wielk), 4:08.64; 2. Joel Barlow, 4:10.86; 3. Sheehan, 4:11.80; 4. East Lyme, 4:13.67; 5. New Fairfield, 4:14.39; 6. Avon (Anya Ek, Aiyssa Crawford, Shipa Donde, Carly Regalado), 4:15.39

4×800: 1. Nonnewaug (Brooke Andrew, Sarah Woodward, Jacquelin Berger, Mary Bibbey), 9:57.62; 2. Sacred Heart Academy, 10:09.85; 3. Brookfield, 10:21.06; 4. Avon (Madison Sides, Ashley Martin, Christina Martin, Ryley Higgins), 10:22.18; 5. East Lyme, 10:22.51; 6. RHAM, 10:25.64

Long jump: 1. Olivia Steiner, Jonathan Law, 17-2 ¾; 2. Kristen Washington, Hillhouse, 16-3; 3. 4. Ryana elsey, Fitch, 16-21/2; 5. Alexa Spain, Nonnewaug, 15-11; 6. Isabelle Riker, East Lyme, 15-10

High jump: 1. Sydnee Spruill, Fitch, 5-2; 2 (tie). Kathryn Kelly, Lauralton Hall and Mae Mathews, Nonnewaug, 5-0; 4. Patricia Mroczkowski, Berlin, J5-0; 5 (tie). Abigail Roth, Sacred Heart and Lauren Kovacs, Brookfield, J5-0

Triple jump: 1. Claira Janover, Branford, 35-5; 2. Kathryn Kelly, Lauralton Hall, 35-41/2; 3. Mae Mathews, Nonnewaug, 34-7 ¼; 4. Christina Sordi, Nonnewaug, 34-21/2; 5. Ryana Kelsey, Fitch, 34-1; 6. Melanie Coleman, Law, 33-10 ¼; 11. Carly Carpino, Avon, 32-2½  

Pole vault: 1. Kyleigh Dumas, Barlow, 10-6; 2. Kate DiBella, Barlow, 9-0; 3. (tie). Stephanie Phoenix, Sheehan and Bridget Wirtz, Branford, J9-0; 5. Audrey Worth, Avon, J9-0; 6. (tie). Taylor Brown, Branford and Allison Kelleher, Woodstock Academy, 8-6

Javelin: 1. Kaleigh Sherman, Avon, 127-11; 2. Nina D’Amato, Berlin, 114-1; 3. Allyn Petrillo, Sheehan, 105-4; 4. Keira Integlia, Branford, 104-10; 5. Zinnia Hall, Foran, 103-11; 6. Brianna Colvin, Platt, 95-8; 8. Olivia Hyun, Avon, 94-8

Discus: 1. Kara Heilemann, Woodstock Academy, 121-1; 2. Caitlyn Cornish, Torrington, 104-9; 3. Ann Vigil, Bacon Academy, 103-1; 4. Shawna Winters, Law, J103-1; 5. Jamie Foster, East Lyme, 94-10; 6. Mae Mathews, Nonnewaug, 93-6

Shot put: 1. Lauryn Gause, Brookfield, 37-4 ¾; 2. Teaira Edwards, Hillhouse, 34-6 ¼; 3. Ann Vigil, Bacon Academy, 33-8; 4. Alexia Fox, Torrington, 32-11 ¼; 5. Camille Balucki, Fermi, 32-7; 6. Kaylani Inman-Johnson, Platt, 32-4½

BOYS

Top 10 team results: 1. Windsor, 105; 2. Fitch, 68; 3. Hillhouse, 61; 4. Lyman Hall, 50; 5. North Haven, 41; 6. East Haven, 37; 7. Avon, 35; 8. Bunnell, 33; 9. East Lyme, 29.50; 10. Berlin, 26

100: 1. Tyler Coyle, Windsor, 10.78; 2. Kyshawn Bonner, Windsor, 10.81; 3. Rajae Maxwell, Bulkeley, 11.05; 4. Nija Williams, Cheney Tech, 11.31; 5. Jay Donaldson, East Haven, 11.35; 6. Darius Wise, Hillhouse, 11.40; 11. Andrew Blackmore, Avon, 11.47

200: 1. Tyler Coyle, Windsor, 21.92; 2. Kyshawn Bonner, Windsor, 21.99; 3. Timothy Epps, Windsor, 22.58; 4. Tyreise Swain Jr., Hillhouse, 22.71; 5. Jay Donaldson, East Haven, 23.12; 6. Alex Pratcher, Law, 23.17400: 1. Omar Gebril, North Haven, 49.38; 2. Timothy Epps, Windsor, 50.11; 3. Tyreise Swain Jr., Hillhouse, 51.28; 4. Sachin Manning, Bassick, 51.76; 5. Jake Owens, Woodstock Academy, 51.94; 6. Antoine Merritt, Hillhouse, 52.01

800: 1. Jon Gill, Lyman Hall, 1:55.37; 2. Ben Ruffing, Barlow, 1:57.06; 3. Alex Ghajar, Bunnell, 1:58.98; 4. Tommy Consalvo, Brookfield, 1:59.39; 5. Ryan Harrington, Windsor, 2:00.27; 6. Matt Kerst, Fitch, 2:02.35

1,600: 1. Ben Siciliano, Guilford, 4:21.34; 2. Ryan Brennan, North Haven, 4:22.31; 3. Michael Bortolot, Barlow, 4:30.89; 4. Finn Davidson, Guilford, 4:31.32; 5. Michael Petillo, Stratford, 4:31.68; 6. Brian Carraturo, Bethel, 4:38.98

3,200: 1. Michael Rautter, New Fairfield, 9:33.03; 2. Christopher Rivas, Brookfield, 9:40.07; 3. Michael Petillo, Stratford, 9:44.58; 4. Patrick Briody, E.O. Smith, 9:45.69; 5. Vann Moffett, East Lyme, 9:53.85; 6. Andrew Suter, Avon, 10:08.95

110 hurdles: 1. John Witik, Lyman Hall, 14.94; 2. Kory King, Branford, 15.48; 3. Malek Elshakhs, E.O. Smith, 15.58; 4. Jason Pinnock, Windsor, 16.01; 5. Patrick Scheurer, Fitch, 16.03; 6. Christopher Aponte, Bethel, 16.29; 15. Blake Thompson, Avon, 17.41

300 hurdles: 1. John Witik, Lyman Hall, 39.67; 2. Marcus Manson, Windsor, 40.12; 3. Darius Wise, Hillhouse, 41.80; 4. Kevin Russell, Berlin, 42.09; 5. Patrick Scheurer, Fitch, 42.27; 6. Glenn Orpiano, Law, 42.45

4×100 relay: 1. Windsor (Jakwan Simmons, Tyler Coyle, Michael Mahon, Kyshawn Bonner), 42.17; 2. East Haven, 44.06; 3. Bulkeley, 44.10; 4. Berlin, 44.70; 5. Bunnell, 44.86; 6. Foran, 45.13

4×400: 1. Windsor (Timothy Epps, Michael Mahon, Christopher McLean, Marcus Manson), 3:24.12; 2. Lyman Hall, 3:29.95; 3. Hillhouse, 3:34.12; 4. Guilford, 3:34.94; 5. E.O. Smith, 3:35.84; 6. Fitch, 3:36.35

4×800: Lyman Hall (Mike Ransom, Brian Oliveira, Jordan Crawford, Jon Gill), 8:14.02; 2. East Lyme, 8:16.97; 3. Fitch, 8:20.45; 4. Berlin, 8:27.09; 5. Hillhouse, 8:33.64; 6. Foran, 8:34.75

Long jump: 1. Sachin Manning, Bassick, 22-11/2; 2. Mike Griffith, East Haven, 21-51/2; 3. Gabriel Abdul-Karim, Hillhouse, 21-4; 4. Jason Pinnock, Windsor, 20-11; 5. Michael Mahon, Windsor, 20-61/2; 6. Jonathan Tomlinson, Woodstock Academy, 20-3; 10. Zach Tilsch, Avon, 18-9

High jump: 1. Gabriel Abdul-Karim, Hillhouse, 6-4; 2. Austin Thornberg, East Haven, J6-4; 3. Konstantinos Lanis, East Lyme, 6-2; 4. Matt Luddy, Berlin, J6-2; 5. (tie) Brett Bragaw, East Lyme and Connor Kenny, New Fairfield, 6-0; 12. Matthew Gondek, Avon, 5-6

Triple jump: 1. Gabriel Abdul-Karim, Hillhouse, 46-91/2; 2. Javel Dawkins, Bunnell, 45-2; 3. Jonathan Cineus, Bunnell, 41-10 ¾; 4. Mike Sanon, Norwich Tech, 41-5 ¾; 5. Tyric Scott, Fitch, 40-4; 6. Jakwan Simmons, Windsor, 40-0

Pole vault: 1. Milan Spisek, Barlow, 13-6; 2. Aristedes Manthous, East Lyme, 12-6; 3. Alex Schwindt, Fitch, J12-6; 4. David Apgar, E.O. Smith, J12-6; 5. Jack Ferrara, Bunnell, 12-0; 6. Jared Hubler, Foran, 11-6

Javelin: 1. Anthony Valentino, North Haven, 161-1; 2. Geoff Kirk, Avon, 159-4; 3. Marek Cierniewski, Avon, 153-9; 4. Guy Curtis, Watertown, 148-0; 5. Patrick Scheurer, Fitch, 147-7; 6. Tyric Scott, Fitch, 146-2

Discus: 1. Geoff Kirk, Avon, 153-4; 2. Brian Robinson, Fitch, 146-8; 3. Eli Rosario Vega, Fitch, 139-8; 4. Jackson Sainville, Stratford, 131-0; 5. Daniel Carrasquillo, Cheney Tech, 126-9; 6. Niam Coward, East Haven, 123-1

Shot put: 1. Shane O’Connor, North Haven, 51-5; 2. Geoff Kirk, Avon, 48-8; 3. Eli Rosario Vega, Fitch, 45-11; 4. Brian Robinson, Fitch, 44-10; 5. Cedrick Lingane, Foran, 44-61/2; 6. Everett Guess, Fitch, 43-11

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.

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