BRISTOL – The Bristol Central track programs opened the 2019 campaign with two winning efforts – both getting to the pay window.
The boys squad came out firing, sinking a game Plainville squad 92-58 at Tinty Track and Field from Plainville High School.
“Way to pick up where we left off boys,” said Central boys coach Tamara Stafford-Kirk via her Twitter feed.
And then on the flip side, the girls countered with an 84-57 victory over the Blue Devils – giving the track and field programs a clean sweep of the afternoon.
“Great job ladies,” said Central girls coach Kiara Bonilla on Twitter.
For the boys, first places were had by several Central athletes as short distance sprinter Ramon Ambert and hurdler Jose Navedo won multiple events.
Ambert took the 100 meters in 11.6 seconds, captured the 400 meters in 53.15 seconds, while the 4×400 meter relay grouping of Ambert, Jose Ramirez, Galen Hickey, and David Bowes finished in first place with a time of 3:45.
Navedo won the 100 hurdles (16.44 seconds), the 300 hurdles (43.71 seconds) and earned the victory in the pole vault with a successful attempt and make of nine feet.
“It was a good opening meet for the boys,” said Stafford-Kirk. “We have a lot of work to do but it’s early and I feel really good about this season. Ramon Ambert had a strong meet winning the 100, 400 and 4×400 meter relay, while Captain Jose Navedo dominated in the 110 hurdles, 300 hurdles and pole vault.”
Mark Petrosky won the mile challenge (1600 meters) in 4:53 while Jose Ramirez took the 800 meters in 2:08.
Also for the Rams, David Bowes had an excellent time in the 200 meters (23.17 seconds) and then standout Devin Flores finished the 3200 meters in 10:44 for the best time of the day.
And then the combination of Mark Petrosky, Devin Flores, Austin Freve, and Jose Ramirez won the 4×800 relay in 8:54.
In the field, Jorge DeJesus won the shotput (35 feet, 10 inches); Calvin Neal made a great leap in the triple jump for first place (36 feet, 6.75 inches); and Jakob Salinas had a winning toss of 167 feet, 9 inches for Central in the javelin.
“Sophomore Jakob Salinas had a huge opening javelin throw of 167’9”,” said Stafford-Kirk.
And there were plenty of first place finishes to go around for the girls as well against the Blue Devils.
The 4×800 relay team of Natalia Popielarz, Bella Bosco, Alexandra Sirko, and Alexa Furniss won the event in 11:12 while the 4×100 relay squad – consisting of Julia Simpson, Sofia Veronesi, Emma Stone, and Mia Hinton – were winners in just under 56 seconds (55.7 seconds).
The 4×400 relay outfit of Hinton, Stone, Veronesi, and Popielarz were winners in 4:36 as the Rams were 3-0 in the relay events.
Also for Central, Simpson won the 100 meters (13.56 seconds); Gabrielle Calfe took the quarter-mile event (1:06.62); while Stone was victorious in the 300 hurdles (55 seconds).
Popielarz took the 800 meters in 2:45.52 while the Rams captured a couple events in the field as well.
Abigail Calfe won the triple jump with a leap of 32’ 3” while Kaiya Alexander’s toss of 30’7” was the standard in the shot put.
And then over at Bristol Eastern, the girls defeated Middletown while the boys squad fell to the Blue Dragons from Alumni Field.
The girls were 82-68 victors over Middletown and some of the wins by the Lancers were good enough for state tournament qualification.
Alicia Rappleyea captured the 200 meters, qualifying for the states with her finish, while also winning the 100 as well.
Jenesis Howard took the 100 and 300 hurdles; Alyssa Lavoie came in first in the 400; Avery Braccia took the mile event; Ryley Plourde paced the meet in the high jump; and Emma Rodjenski tossed the discus the furthest that day.
Angelina Lusitani qualified for the states in the javelin – winning the event against Middletown.
The boys at Eastern dropped a tough 90-52 decision to Middletown but still had some excellent finishes.
Joe Hardin took first in the 200 and 400 events; while Kyle Rivera won the pole vault – all qualifying for the states off their efforts against the Blue Dragons.
Jake Woznicki took home both hurdle events while the boys 4×800 squad was a winner as well.
Finally, the St. Paul Catholic boys and girls track and field teams battled Derby and Watertown from the John J. Mills Complex from Watertown High School on Tuesday, April 2.
The boys program dropped two tough decisions, falling to Derby 119-19 and Watertown 134-16.
And the girls squad also fell to those same teams, losing to Watertown 127-18 while dropping a tough meet to Derby, 69-55.
To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Michael Letendre, email him at MLetendre@BristolObserver.com.