Girls' indoor track wins state championship

The Newtonite

by Jacob Gurvis

For the third straight year, members of the girls’ indoor track team became  State Champions on Saturday, Feb. 23 at home. The team had some struggles to overcome throughout the season, but they didn’t give up, according to senior Meghan Bellerose, a captain along with seniors Carla Forbes and Maeve Larkin.

“We were missing some talented athletes due to injuries and many teams had counted us out because of our 7th place finish in the Division I meet the week before, but our coach was confident that if we all did our best we could still win,” said Bellerose.

The Tigers finished first with 27 points, and were proud to win a third straight title, according to coach Joe Tranchita.

“They took great pride in knowing that they had overcome injuries and illness and were still able to compete and win at the state level,” said Tranchita.

According to Bellerose, the leading scorers for the Tigers were (listed as: name, event, place, time): Bellerose, 600 meter, 2nd place, 1:33.06, senior Madison Nadeau, 300 meter, 6th place, 41.53, junior Michaela Smith, shot put, 2nd place, 38 feet 10 inches, 4×800, 7th place, junior Evie Heffernan, junior Maeve Greeley, junior Elizabeth Koch, and sophomore Isabella Reilly, 9:43.06, 4×400, 3rd place, Bellerose, Nadeau, freshman Cristina Galvagno, senior Julia Berstein, 4:03.23.

Accommodations had to be made because of injuries affecting the team during States, according to Tranchita. “We totally scrapped our 4×200 in order to ensure that our 4×800 and 4×400 relay teams would remain as competitive as possible.  Additional injuries would have forced us to use alternates which may not have made us as competitive as we needed to be to score well,” he said.
Being the team’s third straight title, it shows the winning atmosphere for track at this school, and it is a sign of good things to come, according to Tranchita. “We had a significantly large number of new members on the team this year, so winning this title and doing as well as we did this season taught those members about our team tradition of success and what is necessary to be successful at a high level of competition.  It taught them how to win,” he said.
This year’s championship win means a lot for a team dealing with major setbacks, according to Tranchita. “First, we had to overcome more adversity this year than in past years. Second, we did it without the services of the #1 jumper in the country and one of the top sprinters in state, Carla Forbes. This showed everyone just how strong our program is and highlighted the talents of others on the team,” he said.

Winning is always exciting, and according to Tranchita, this event was no exception. “The biggest highlight was Meghan Bellerose’s school record run in the 600, as she finished second with one of the fastest times ever in state history, and with the sixth best time in the country this year (1:33.06.)  Michaela Smith’s second place in the shot put was also key, as it secured another 8 points.  Having the meet come down to the final event was also exciting. This was the fourth time this season that has happened, so we were battle tested and handled the pressure really well,” said Tranchita.

With a third straight title, the girls’ indoor track team overcame problems and continued its success.