By BRIAN JENNINGS
Heading into Thursday’s meet on April 5, Southington coach Connor Green said that the team knew there were going to be some challenges. The weather was one challenge, but the other was the upcoming spring break.
The day that the meet fell on happened to be a day where many athletes were leaving for vacation.
“We weren’t at full roster, but neither were the other teams,” said Green. “It was totally uneven.”
The weather just made it that much worse with temperatures ranging in the 40s on a frigid, blustery day. And when you look at the performances, Green said that that weather probably played the biggest role in how everyone did.
The total scores were indicative of one thing, but there weren’t any crazy performances on the track, according to Green.
“Our field events did very well,” said Green. “Alijah (Vega), Amanda (Howe), and Julia (Groll) all threw really well. But with 4-foot-8 for the high jump, we had probably three or four girls in that meet that have cleared 5-foot-2. The weather definitely played a huge role in it.”
The Lady Knights split their season opener with a four-point victory, 77-73 over Avon and 93.5-56.5 loss to Glastonbury at home.
Southington’s 4x100m relay scored the top time on the track.
Natalie Verderame placed second in the 200m and third in the 400m. Lilly Scalise finished second in the 300m hurdles and fourth in the 100m hurdles. Livvy Pizzitola took third in the 100m.
Southington’s 4x400m relay posted the second-best time, and the 4x800m relay scored third overall.
Other top performances on the track included a fifth-place finish by Sarah Minkiewicz in the 800m and seventh-place finish by Laini Pizzitola in the 3200m. Grace Michaud took ninth in the 1600m.
Southington did much better in the field events. Amanda Howe swept the top spots in the discus and shot put. Howe out-threw the next closest competitor in the discus throw by over 56 feet.
Alijah Vega captured first place in the javelin competition.
Tayler Riddick placed second in the triple jump and third in the long jump. Ella Shamus-Udicious finished third in the pole vault. Sydney Garrison, Allie Brown, and Amanda Brocki tied for fourth in the high jump.
The following qualified for the Class LL meet: the 4x100m relay (52.08); Verderame in the 200m (27.8); Vega (101’1”), Julia Groll (96’8”), and Janette Wadolowski (90’0”) in the javelin; and Howe in the discus (139’1”) and shot put (38’8.5”).
The Knights will be back in action next week when they travel to Sheehan High School in Wallingford for the R-J Invitational on Friday, April 13. Meet time is 3 p.m.
For more in depth coverage, see our weekly print edition. To contact sports writer Brian Jennings, email him at BJennings@SouthingtonObserver.com.