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Joyce Endee

T-Wolves push on through the rain



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MATT MCGINNIS carries the baton in the 4X400-meter relay at the Wilderness Championships on Saturday in North Conway. Dennis Coughlin. (click for larger version)
May 23, 2011
NORTH CONWAY — In a season marked mostly by poor weather, it was fitting that Mother Nature unloaded on Saturday during the Wilderness League Championships in North Conway.

"It was awful," coach Kristi Hikel said of the rain. "But it kind of summed up the whole season. I don't think we had a nice day all year."

The girls were toeing the line for the 1,600 meters when the first rain storm rolled through.

"We could see the clouds moving across towards the stadium," Hikel said. "And then it just came down."

The meet soldiered on, however, and the Prospect boys took fifth place overall and the girls raced to seventh.

Despite the weather, numerous Timber Wolves set personal bests, which was impressive to the coach.

"I think they've got to the point where they just suck it up and do their best," Hikel said of dealing with the weather.

On the boys' side, Matt McGinnis placed sixth overall in the 200 meters in a time of 25.1 seconds, while Greg Tinkham raced to fourth in the 400 meters in a time of 55.1 seconds.

Drew Tuttle ran one of his best times in the 3,200 meters, finishing third overall in 10:50.4, while all three relay teams set season best times.

The 4X100-meter team of Alex Rayno, Matt McGinnis, Jason Houghton and Nick Bachelder took fifth in 48.5 seconds. The 4X400-meter team of Tinkham, Ben McGinnis, Matt McGinnis and Rayno raced to fourth in 3:46.4 and the 4X800-meter team of Tuttle, Tinkham, Ben McGinnis and Mike Fife took third in 9:02.7.

Senior Ryan Soucie took first overall in the javelin with a toss of 145 feet, one inch.

On the girls' side, Sarah Simoneau ran to sixth in the 100 meters in 13.8 seconds. Both she and Dagny Brown finished with personal bests in their heats and both qualified for the finals with times of 13.4 seconds.

Courtney Bennett set another school record in the 1,600 meters despite the pouring rain, as she raced to second place in 5:30.2. She came back to win the 3,200 meters in a time of 11:49.50.

Karalee Jannini raced to a new personal best in the 300-meter hurdles, finishing second in a time of 52.3 seconds.

The 4X100-meter relay team raced to third overall in a time of 54.2 seconds. That team was Brown, Simoneau, Kelsey Hannafin and Anna Jortikka.

Jortikka also picked up a sixth place in the high jump by clearing four feet, six inches and Amanda Zaino pushed on through the rain to take fifth in the discus with a toss of 77 feet, 10 inches.

Hikel noted that the meet moved very quickly, finishing up by 1 p.m.

"It was very good competition," Hikel said. "I love the Wilderness Meet, the camaraderie of the coaches and the kids.

"I was really pleased with their performances," she added.

The next step on the ladder for the Prospect kids is the Division III State Meet, which takes place at Newfound Regional High School on Saturday, May 28, at 10 a.m.

The Prospect relay teams will be attending and numerous athletes have already qualified for the meet while others are right on the cusp of qualifying.

Martin Lord & Osman
Salmon Press
Varney Smith
Garnett HIll
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