Woodstock Title Leads Horde of Area Track Winners
Woodstock's Carmen Bango finishes first in the girls 1500 meter run at the VPA Div. III state championship track meet at Green Mountain Union High School in Chester-Chester Depot, Vt., on June 7, 2014. (Valley News - Will Parson) Purchase photo reprints »
Thetford's Andy Sharp prepares for a pole vault attempt at the VPA Div. III state championship track meet at Green Mountain Union High School in Chester-Chester Depot, Vt., on June 7, 2014. Sharp finished second in the event. (Valley News - Will Parson) Purchase photo reprints »
Oxbow's Dylan Hatin competes in the discus at the VPA Div. III state championship track meet at Green Mountain Union High School in Chester-Chester Depot, Vt., on June 7, 2014. Hatin finished second in the discus and first in the shotput. (Valley News - Will Parson) Purchase photo reprints »
Chester, Vt. — As Thetford Academy senior Chris Wells jumped over the final hurdle in the 300 meter event on Saturday, he knew he still had some yardage to go to reach the finish line and was very much aware that Bellows Falls’ Brian McAnuff was close behind.
“I could hear him pounding the ground, and I knew he was really close,” Wells said.
Wells and hundreds of other athletes competed at the Vermont Division III State Track and Field Championships at Green Mountain Union High School on Saturday under blue skies with a soft breeze.
McAnuff was closing fast as both runners leaned and stretched their necks across the finish line almost crossing together.
When the race was over, Wells headed toward the Thetford tent unsure if he had won. He was already bummed out after coming off a New England qualifying event last week in Essex that found him just .17 seconds short of making the trip next week to Massachusetts.
But on this day Wells was able to smile as his time of 41.85 seconds was just enough to beat McAnuff who finished at 41.94.
“You mean I won?” he said when told of the order of finish. “That’s great. This is my last high school track meet.”
The big winners on the day were the Woodstock girls and the Bellows Falls boys, both repeat champions. Athletes from both those schools had big days as the Woodstock boys were second and the Bellows Falls girls third.
Kathryn Bassette and Carmen Bango were big point-getters for the Wasps as Bassette won the 100 hurdles, pole vault and triple jump and was fourth in the 300-meter hurdles.
Bango, just a sophomore, won the 1,500 and 800 meters and was on the winning 4x400 relay team. Her win in the 1,500 was impressive as she took the early lead and kept stretching her advantage, winning by almost six seconds.
“That was the plan,” she said. “This was exciting.”
Bassette and Cassidy Santorelli from Bellows Falls were the last two standing in the pole vault. Santorelli dropped out after she could not clear nine feet, a height that Bassette cleared by several inches.
One of the more interesting features of the event is the battle between the Moore brothers of Bellows Falls. Both are talented and competitive, as Willie Moore won the 800 with Jamie Moore finishing second. In the 1,500, Jamie was first and Willie second.
Lindzy Stuntz was stunning winner for Woodstock in the grinding 3,000-meter run as she finished an incredible 24 seconds ahead of the second-place finisher.
Stuntz was also a part of the winning 4x800 relay team along with Ann Ramsey, Rachel Emery and Lily Nickerson.
Anna Dieffanbach was a winner for Woodstock in the high jump and was fourth in the 100 hurdles and fifth in the 300 hurdles.
David Dunbar was just one of a number of Bellows Falls athletes that keyed the Terriers as he won the 110-meter hurdles, long jump, high jump and was on the winning 4x100 relay teams.
Team Scores: Boys — 1. Bellows Falls 160, 2. Woodstock 91, 3. Thetford 66, 4. Enosburg Falls 57, 5. Montpelier 52, 6. Lake Region 45, 7. Oxbow 44, 8. Hazen 14, 9. Peoples 12, 10. Springfield 8, 11. Mill River 5, 12. BFA-Fairfax 4.
Girls — 1. Woodstock 131, 2. Lake Region 99, 3. Bellows Falls 66, 4. Thetford 53, 5. Enosburg Falls 43, 6. Peoples 41,7. Oxbow 39, 8. Randolph, 24, 9. Springfield 23, 10. Mill River 23, 11. Montpelier 13, 12. Hazen 2.