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Athletes Make Most of Last Chance Meet to Qualify for New Balance Nationals Indoor

Created at 2/26/2019 9:06 AM  by Marty Ogden 
Last modified at 2/26/2019 9:30 AM  by Ron Knapp 

msr  Athletes from Connecticut took advantage of a tremendous opportunity to compete in events against collegiate and open runners at the Boston University Last Chance Meet on Sunday. The high school athletes also had a chance to watch several professional runners race including two-time Olympic medalists Nick Willis of New Zealand and 17-time NCAA champion Edward “King Ches” Cheserek, formerly of Oregon.

Heat 3 of the Men 800m run featured the latest dual of the season when Malcolm Going overtook his chief rival Miller Anderson in the last 100m to finish 1:50.85 to 1:51.54. Going is the State Open Indoor 600m Champion from Danbury High School while Miller is the 1000m State Open Indoor Champion from Hall High School. According to Athletic.net rankings, their times are the 2nd and 3rd fastest in the country this year. Also, according to Larry Newman, keeper of the official New England records, both finished under Victor Gras of Belmont High’s all time New England Indoor record of 1:51.73.

The early pace-setter in the heat was Lewis Ngwenya who held the lead for the first 600m until Anderson took over with Going right on his shoulder at the bell. Both athletes battled on the back straightaway in the final lap until Going took the lead just before the last turn. On the homestretch, Going was challenged all the way through to the finish by collegian John Finnegan of Navy who nipped the high school senior by .01 seconds.

After the race, Going gave credit to his competition for helping him run so fast. “Other people took it out and gave me someone to pace off of and then Miller went, and he took it with me which is exactly what I needed to hit a good kick at the end.”

Anderson was equally complementary of Going saying “he is just so tough. Its great racing against him.”

Both runners are considering running the 800m run at New Balance Nationals Indoor in addition to a relay for their team. Should they decide to compete, Connecticut will have two of the top-ranked runners with a chance at either winning or earning All-American honors.

Nick Sinofsky, a member of Suffield’s recent State Open Indoor Championship 4x800m relay team, ran an indoor PR of 1:56.34.4 in in heat 4 in the Men 800m while Mo Ali, a member of Hall’s State Open 4x400m silver medalist team, also broke two minutes, finishing in 1:57.99.

Going and Miller 

John Finnegan of Navy edged Malcolm Going at the line with Miller Anderson trailing in Heat 3 of Men 800m. (Photo by Marty Ogden)

In other racing action at the meet, Trey Cormier, Hall’s State Open Indoor 1600m silver medalist, has rounded his way into shape after an early season injury to run 8:33.45 (13th place) in the Men 3000m event that qualified him for the championship section of the two-mile at Nationals. His time places him at number two on the national rankings in the event according to Athletic.net. After doubling back from the 1600m in the State Open, the senior barely qualified for New England Championship with a 6th place finish in the 3200m. With this race Cormier becomes one of the favorites to win the New England title in the two-mile race in the championship meet on Saturday.

Trey Cormier 

Trey Cormier competed in the Men 3000m at the BU Last Chance Meet. (Photo by Marty Ogden)

In the Men 5000m run, Footlocker National XC finalist Matt Farrell ran a 15:03.32 which also qualified him for Nationals in the event. The Loomis Chaffee junior was recently named the Connecticut Gatorade XC Player of the Year. Jacob Hefele made his first attempt at an indoor 5k and finished in 15:27.88. The Danbury junior had already qualified for the NBIN 5k based on his time of 9:21 from his winning performance in the 3200m run at the Class LL meet. Eddie Nicholas, Class S 3200m champion from Nonnewaug, finished in 15:46.05 in heat 2 behind Hefele.

Hefele and Nicholas

Jacob Hefele (#753) lead Eddie Nicholas (#426) in the Men 5k at the BU Last Chance Meet. (Photo by Marty Ogden)

Simon Jupp, State Open third place finisher in the 600m from Ridgefield, is now ranked first in the state this season in the 400m dash, finishing in 49.86 for 34th place. The time qualified the junior for the NBIN championship race in the 400m event.

Simon Jupp

Simon Jupp in the Men 400m at the BU Last Chance Meet. (Photo by Marty Ogden)

Some area high school coaches even put in some noteworthy performances. Hartford Public coach Phil Mitchell ran his “adult PR” in the Men 1-mile, finishing in 4:26.05. Rocky Hill assistant coach Chris Angelo finished the Men 3k in 8:49 as he started racing again a few weeks ago after a three year hiatus.

Official meet results can be found at Lancer Timing Services