With their footprints left on the world-famous Armory Track, the boys track team raced out of the Queens Borough Championships in a gust of glory. For the second year in a row (and ever), the team placed first in the championships, outdoing strong competitors of previous years, including rival Francis Lewis High School who placed second overall and Bayside High School, who took third. By team tradition, the gold plaque, which is to reside by other encased athletic plaques in Townsend Harris, was taken home by one of the captains.
The meet, which took place Sunday morning on February 7, was greeted with enthusiasm from the runners. The team held a certainty that a repeat victory was ordained. Thus, many of the boys kept their expectations high.
Senior Owen Larosiliere said, “Going into the meet I expected to give it my all in whichever event I was going to do, and I honestly expected us to take the crown.”
Despite trailing Bayside 53-33 at the halfway point of the meet, the Hawks surged to overcome the deficit through a variety of running and throwing events. By the time the last event had concluded, THHS had garnered over 100 points, with the runner up [Lewis] having won less than 80 and Bayside behind them by one point. Points were scored based on placing top six in each event (1st place – 10 points, 2nd place – 8 points, etc.).
Even among teammates the competition remained fierce. In the 1000 meter run, junior Muhamed Bicic and senior captain Abdoulaye Diallo went head-to-head, nearly tying at the finish line. Abdoulaye placed ahead first by less than a tenth of a second with a time of 2:40.50. Muhamed trailed slightly with a time of 2:40.56. Abdoulaye would also set a new school record for the 600 meter dash, running 1:22 and placing second in the event.
Before the gun went off, the ultimate goal of the team still pressed Muhamed more than facing off against his teammate. He explained, “While standing on the line before the 1000 meter race, the standings were announced and we weren’t in first at the time, so I knew that I had to perform well along with my teammates in order to win.”
In the 3200 meter run, senior captain Matthew Sullivan placed third, clocking 10:36, a near city qualifying time. Juniors Justice Williams and Adam Sosnicki landed second and sixth respectively in the 55 meter hurdles, hitting 8.21 seconds and 8.85 seconds for themselves.
Additionally, the meet was all throughout studded by strong times for every relay from THHS. The team’s 4 x 800 meter relay placed first, the 4 x 200 meter relay snagged fifth, and the 4 x 400 meter relay clinched sixth. This overall relay performance is an unprecedented feat for the team, which has never been able to grab points for every relay category at these championships before.
Rookies shined at the meet as well. Newcomer senior Mason Rivero placed first in the weight throw with 41 feet and 7.5 inches. He also placed fourth in the shot put, throwing a respectable 36 feet and 1 inch.
Nevertheless, the meet’s success and individual successes overshadowed some who felt they could’ve done better. Freshman Gen Kramer noted, “Personally, my performance was lackluster and weak compared to my other showings.”
Still, he remained positive. “Although the meet was a personal loss for myself, I’m glad that my team was able to pull through and win the championships,” he added.
Having now won borough champs in cross country and indoor track, achieving the “Triple Crown” in outdoor season is a fair prospect for the boys. While the city championships and freshman/sophomore championships outline the rest of the indoor season, those who will not be competing until outdoor track will be spending their time gearing up for the final endeavor.