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Avon’s Rhiannon Richmond wins 2nd Class MM title; AHS boys finish eighth

MIDDLETOWN, May 30 – Avon High junior Rhiannon Richmond won a CIAC Class MM championship for the second straight year on Thursday when she easily won the 3,200 meters with a school record time of 11:07.00 at Middletown High School at the CIAC girls track and field championship meet.

Richmond beat Brookfield’s Juliet Brissell by nearly 12 seconds, taking 0.67 of a second of the school record that she set earlier this month at the Greater Hartford Invitational. Brissell was second with a time of 11:18.96. The third place runner from Tolland finished with a time of 11:29.58.

Richmond won the Class MM title in the 1,600 meters a year ago.

Avon’s 4×800 relay team (Caroline Luby, Jamie Rubenstein, Gabrielle Richmond, Mareen Ek) was fourth with a time of 10:11.92, nearly 18 seconds off their previous best time this season of 10:29.24.

Ek was seventh in the 1,600 meters with a time of 5:39.19 while Gabrielle Richmond was seventh in the 800 meters with a time of 2:30.00. The Falcons finished 15th with 19 points – their lowest finish since 2008 when they were 17th.

The Avon High boys track and field team finished eighth in Class MM – just their second top 10 finish since 1995. Avon’s 4×800 meter relay team (Anish Rajamanickam, Alvin Guo, Tyler Hinrichs and Jack Martin) finished second with a school record time of 8:12.09.

Branford High was still way ahead with a winning time of 8:07.40 but Weston was close to four seconds behind Avon in third place with a time of 8:16.64.

Avon’s 4×400 relay team (Martin, Hinrichs, Hari Patchgolla, Rajamanickam) was third with a time of 3:27.97 while Martin finished fourth in the 1,600 meters with a time of 4:35.12.

Rajamanickam was fourth in the 400 meters with a time of 51.10 seconds while Patchgolla was ninth with a time of 52.89. Tyler Hinrichs was fifth in the 800 meters with a season-best time of 2:01.04.

Avon’s only other top 10 finish since 1995 was a seventh place finish in 2016 when the Falcons scored 35 points. Avon scored 28 points on Thursday in the Class MM championship meet.

Only 12 events were completed on Wednesday when heavy rain forced the postponement of the meet, which was nearly at the halfway point. The competition began again this morning at 10 a.m. at Middletown High.

NOTES: Rhiannon Richmond has won three championship medals at the Class MM championship meet. She was a member of the state championship team in the 4×800 relay in 2017 and won the 1,600 meters a year ago. Carly Carpino holds the school record with four state championship medals for the Falcons.

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 40 years. He was inducted into the New England High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2018.

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