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Morgan takes third at Holiday Classic; Frez, Barker win at Joe Sinicrope Invitational

Avon runners competed at the Marine Corps Holiday Classic in New York earlier this week. (Photo courtesy Melissa Morgan)

Indoor track and field athletes from Canton and Avon were in action this week as 2021 came to a close in competition in New York and at Hillhouse High’s Floyd Little Athletic Center in New Haven.

At the Marine Corps Holiday Classic at The Armory in New York City on Wednesday, Avon’s Carver Morgan was third in the varsity mile event with a time of 4:21.86. He was behind two Connecticut runners – Conard’s Callum Sherry, who won in 4:17.00 and Xavier’s Eamon Burke in 4:20.14.

Avon teammates Jevonte Eaves and Luke Hester also ran well in the varsity mile. Eaves was 17th with a time of 4:43.83 while Hester was 26th with a time of 4:52.46. Eaves won his heat.

In the freshman mile event, Will Lancaster broke the existing meet record but so did Devin Batelic of New Bourgh Free in New York. Batelic was first with a time of 4:56.09 with Lancaster finishing second with a time of 4:58.07. The existing race record was 5:03.67.

In the girls varsity mile, Avon’s Marenn Ek was fifth overall with a school record time of 5:26.54.

On Thursday at the Joe Sinicrope Invitational in New Haven, Avon’s Katrina Frez won the pole vault while Canton’s Tommie Barker won the girls shot. Frez won the pole vault with a leap of 8-0 feet while Barker threw the shot 32-0 free to earn the victory.

Canton’s Joy Shand was third in the 300 meters with a time of 48.39 seconds with teammate Ava Dakin coming in fifth with a time of 49.36 seconds. Shand was also seventh (8.38 seconds) in the 55 meters while Dakin was fifth in the 300 meters in 49.36.

Frez had a personal-best leap of 13-6¼ in the long jump to finish seventh.

Other top 10 finishes in the girls meet came from Canton’s Grace First, who was eighth in the 1,600 meters with a time of 6:34.67 and from Avon’s Yasmin Rensch, who was tenth in the long jump with a leap of 13-1 feet.

In the boys meet, Canton’s J.R. Rottkamp finished third in the pole vault, clearing 11 feet. Rottkamp was also tenth in the long jump with a leap of 18-2 feet. Teammate Nate Cournean was ninth in the long jump with a leap of 18-2.

Cournean was also tenth in the 300 meters with a time of 40.99 seconds. Avon’s Ethan Sloat was the top runner for the Falcons in the boys meet finishing 11th in the 3,200 meters with a time of 11:45.94. Sloat may have finished in the top 10 but he stopped to help a competitor who he had inadvertently tripped during the race.

No team scores were kept in at the Joe Sinicrope Invitational.

2021 Joe Sinicrope Invitational results

2021 Marine Corps Holiday Classic (day 2)

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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