Dubin thrilled with Greenwich’s state open track showing

Greenwich High School’s Emma Heerdt competes in the 1,000-meter run during this year’s FCIAC championship meet held at the New Haven Athletic Center. — Dave Stewart photo

Greenwich High School’s Emma Heerdt competes in the 1,000-meter run during this year’s FCIAC championship meet held at the New Haven Athletic Center. — Dave Stewart photo

It’s hard for head coach Evan Dubin to get upset during the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference state open finals.

During Monday’s event that was held at the New Haven Athletic Center, the boys and girls indoor track teams for Greenwich High School were getting the times that Dubin was hoping to see.

The only problem was that the competition also scored higher than the Greenwich boys and girls head coach originally thought.

Despite not getting the points Big Red was hoping for during Opens, it was hard to find a frown from the Greenwich High School tracksters.

“When you ignore places and take a look at just the times and distances our athletes are putting up, everybody is having a great day,” Dubin said. “When you look at places, we are placing a little lower than where we wanted to be. But given that people are really performing at their best, I can’t be mad or disappointed at their performances. We did great, however it’s unfortunate that people did better than us today.”

The Greenwich High boys team finished the state open championship with eight points and tied Wilton, Southington, Westhill, Wethersfield, Oxford and Classical Magnet high schools in 21st place. Leading the way was Danbury High School, as the Hatters took home the state open title with 48 points.

Ridgefield was second with 40 points and Brien McMahon grabbed third with 27 points. Darien finished fourth with 22 points and Windsor rounded out the top five with 20 points.

Despite placing several athletes in high spots, the GHS girls team didn’t net a point at Opens. Wilbur Cross won the girls open title, grabbing the gold with 46 points.

Staples took second with 43 points and Darien finished third with 32.75 points. Tolland snagged fourth with 22 points and Simsbury finished fifth with 20 points.

“I still think we had a very strong meet here today,” senior Anna Black said. “We all ran really strong times and we all came together as a team. It was a lot of fun. I love indoor track and I think we are a huge family. We all support each other. This is an awesome way to end my winter season.”

In the finals of the 55-meter dash, Big Red’s Austin Longi finished the event with a time of 6.58 seconds and placed third overall. He was mere inches away from McMahon’s Shnyden Pierre, who took second with a time of 6.57.

“Austin’s time was fantastic and it was the second-fastest he has run this year,” Dubin said. “He really wanted to win, but he was hoping that if he didn’t win, he would get second. Obviously Austin is disappointed, however as his coach, I am very proud of him. The job he put out was fantastic. He was frustrated that he didn’t win, but that just shows what a competitor he is and how much he wants it.”

Another two points for Greenwich came from senior Stephan DeCarlo in the long jump.

Seeded ninth in the preliminaries, a determined DeCarlo finished Opens fifth overall, grabbing a distance of 20’08” 3/4 and just beat out Staples’ Anthony Bravo, who took sixth with a distance of 20’08” 1/4.

“I think his success now is a real testament to the hard work he put in during the fall,” Dubin said. “He chose to run cross-country and he wasn’t one of the best runners on the team, but he was able to work on his endurance and strengthen his legs. In the winter he had that foundation, so all we had to do was work on his speed and getting all that explosiveness out.”

“I felt very confident going into the meet,” DeCarlo said. “There were a lot of close seeds, so I had a lot of confidence that I could get in the top six and make it into New Englands. All I wanted was to get into the top six so I could continue my season and qualify for New Englands. As a team, I thought we all did really well today. I am very proud of this team.”

For the girls, Greenwich was led by Sarah Cicchetti in the shot put, as the senior finished seventh overall with a distance of 35’07”.

“All season, Sarah has improved at least by a foot after every single meet,” Dubin said. “She threw better by a whole foot today, however her best throw ever got her seventh place. She’s been practicing really hard and I am looking for great things out of her during the spring season.”

In the relays, the GHS foursome of sophomore Emma Slagie, sophomore Anna Giannuzzi, Black and junior Jenny Goggin took eighth overall in the 1,600-meter sprint medley, posting a time of 4:28.61.

Not to be outdone was the 4×800-meter relay team of junior Mia Bonanno, junior Daryl Kennedy, Goggin and sophomore Amy Wyle, as they took ninth overall with a time of 9:53.80.

The 4×400-meter girls team of sophomore Erica Hvolbeck, sophomore Caroline Frey, Goggin and Black finished 10th overall, posting a time of 4:14.80.

For the Greenwich High boys relay teams, the group of senior Spencer Helmrich, senior Mark Jarombek, junior John Pulitano and sophomore Sebastian Oe took 11th overall in the 4×800-meter relay, posting a time of 8:28.79. In the 4×200-meter relay event, Big Red senior Robert Wilson, DeCarlo, sophomore Ryan King and senior Chandler Lasorsa finished 12th on the day, grabbing a time of 1:37.84.

While the indoor season is winding down and Dubin starts preparing for the spring outdoor season to get underway in just over a month, it’s obvious to see how thrilled he has been with the success of this year’s indoor squad.

“This year we knew it was going to be a rebuilding type of year, as we didn’t have all those top finishers like we did in year’s past,” Dubin said. “But when you look at the depth of this team, we were still able to get a lot of people qualified for FCIACs and had a bunch of people qualify for the class LL meet. We might not be bringing home the hardware today, but given how young this team is and the experience they are gaining from today, I think it will carry over to the spring and in years to come.”

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