Now that the outdoor track season is in full swing, the picture is becoming much clearer for who the favorites will be in the upcoming conference and state championships. This was a big weekend for athletes in all events and the state leader board was severely shaken up with a state record and several additions to Connecticut’s all-time performance list.
The greatest performance of the weekend was done at the 88th Greater Hartford Invitational by Patricia Mroczkowski of Berlin who finally cleared 5’10 to set the Connecticut state record after clearing at least 5 feet 7 inches no fewer than six times over the past year. The recognized record was held by Margo Maytham of New Milford and Ann Temple of East Catholic who cleared 5’9.75 38 years ago at the CIAC Class M championships in 1981. Mroczkowski, who has committed to the University of Connecticut, has been a consistent performer over the past three and a half years with three State Open titles and two runner-up finishes in the high jump. Her jump is currently tied for the 11th best performance in the country this season. Now she can lay claim the title of greatest Connecticut female high jumper.
Patricia Mroczkowski of Berlin record-breaking leap at 88th Greater Hartford Invite (c) MySportsResults.com
A trio of freshman have taken over the state leads in the 400m, 3200m and javelin. Alanna Smith of Danbury was the Connecticut Middle School State Champion in the 100m and 400m last year and has had no problem transitioning to the high school level. Even though she was a cheerleader in the winter, she has taken over the state lead in the 400m with her 3rd place finish at the Loucks Games with her time of 55.94. Right behind her in the rankings are seniors Jillian Mars of Bloomfield, who won the New England championship last year and Carly Swierbut of Newtown, last year’s State Open champion. This could be the makings of a great match up of youth versus veterans at the State Open in June.
Longtime fans may remember Bethel’s Erin St. John who was a Footlocker finalist in the early 90s and has been the standard for Bethel distance running for the past quarter of a century. Well, her school record finally was broken in the 3200m run by Ava Graham who took over the state lead with her 10:57.36 at the Loucks Games, good for 8th place in the star-studded field. The freshman only started running in December and has already amassed quite a resume with a 6th place finish at the Indoor State Open and a 12th place finish at the New England championship.
Ava Graham of Bethel (#6) at recent Middletown Varsity Invite (c) MySportsResults.com
Also, at the Loucks Games, freshman Shea Greene of Weston unleashed a magnificent javelin throw of 130-6. Greene, in her first season of track and field is an all-around athlete who is a goalkeeper on the soccer team and also plays varsity basketball for the Trojans. Her performance is not only the top throw in the state this season, but it is also ranked 83rd in the US. If Greene ever needs motivation to throw farther, she only needs to look to the person next to her in the line-up every week, her teammate Kate Joyce who is ranked right behind her in the state with a best throw only a foot less.
The highest nationally ranked performance of the weekend was put in by Wilbur Cross’ boys 1600m sprint medley relay team consisting of Devin Cue, Jasiah Barnes, Caleb Owen and Travis Martin who combined to finish in 3:30.49 with Martin splitting a low 1:55. This is the same quartet that took 2nd in the Emerging Elite section at New Balance Indoor Nationals and they currently have a 11th place national ranking this spring, just over three seconds off E.C. Glass, Virginia’s national leading time of 3:27.54.
This will be the last weekend for athletes to hit big marks before the championships. Here are the most recent top performances from this weekend’s meets and any performances in the top 100 nationally.
Rankings and personal records noted above are based on performance lists compiled at Athletic.net.
Visit the new site for Connecticut High School State Records for Indoor and Outdoor Track & Field at My Track and Field Records.