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Ryan leads Eagles at Dartmouth

by Joshua Spaulding
Sports Editor - Granite State News, Carroll County Independent, Meredith News, Gilford Steamer, Winnisquam Echo, Plymouth Record-Enterprise and Baysider

GRACIE RYAN clears the high jump bar on her way to second place overall on Sunday at Dartmouth. Joshua Spaulding. (click for larger version)
February 03, 2014
HANOVER — The Kennett indoor track team hit the track at the Leverone Fieldhouse on the campus of Dartmouth College on Sunday for the Division II championship.

When the dust had settled, the Eagles didn't have any championships, but they did have some pretty good performances.

"It was a very good day," veteran coach Bernie Livingston said. "All in all, I thought it went very well."

The star of the show for the Eagles was senior Gracie Ryan, who did triple duty on the day.

She kicked off her day with the long jump, where she earned the top seed heading to the finals and then finished fourth overall with a best jump of 15 feet, 10.75 inches.

Then, seconds after completing her long jump responsibilities, she made her way to the high jump, where she simply proceeded to set a new school indoor record, clearing five feet even for second place overall.

"She was exhausted," Livingston said of his star athlete's first jump. "She missed her first jump at four feet, six.

"She had to step right off the (long jump) track and walked right over and started (high) jumping," Livingston said. "Gracie had an amazing day."

The Eagle girls had a few other athletes competing at the individual level as well.

Gigi Miller ran the 55 meters and finished in 10th place in the preliminaries in a time of 7.74 seconds.

Maggie LaRoche ran the 600 meters and came home with a ninth place finish in a time of 1:47.52.

In addition to Ryan, Cassie Doucet also competed in the long jump and she reached a distance of 13 feet, 7.75 inches to take 12th place overall.

The Eagle team of Jen Vizard, Doucet, Ryan and Miller just missed out on picking up points in the 4X200-meter relay, the final event of the day. The Eagles finished in 1:55.12, which placed them seventh overall.

In the first event of the day, the team of Eliza Burke, Izzy Forde, LaRoche and Lisa Carper ran to eighth overall in the 4X800-meter relay in a time of 11:07.93.

The Eagle 4X400-meter team of Burke, LaRoche, Forde and Carper finished 15th in 4:56.93.

On the boys' side of things, Thomas Chant had a strong performance in the 55 meters. He earned a spot in the finals with a qualifying time of 6.79 seconds, which placed him fifth overall. In the finals, he ran to eighth in 6.86 seconds. His preliminary time was a new personal best.

Nick Brown competed in the 1,000 meters and finished 10th overall in 2:47.82.

Corey Crawford was the only other individual Eagle to compete. He finished 11th in the shot put with a toss of 36 feet, 7.75 inches.

The Eagle boys just missed out on points in the 4X800-meter relay, the first event of the day. The team of Andrew Casella, David Mays, Tyrus Parter and Brown ran to seventh place in 8:49.87, a new season best.

In the 4X400-meter relay, the team of Chant, Mays, Parker and Brian Caputo ran to 12th overall in a time of 3:49.26.

"The kids did quite well against the best competition we've gone against all year," Livingston stated.

Joshua Spaulding can be reached at 569-3126 or sportsgsn@salmonpress.com

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