AMHERST — There were a few bumps in the road, but the Brunswick girls track team won its fourth straight title at the 57th annual Comet Relays.
The Blue Devils rang up two victories at the Richard Cooley Track while adding four second-place finishes and one third to hold off Medina 86-80.
The Bees countered with two firsts, two seconds and four thirds to finish behind Brunswick for the third straight year.
Things started off a bit shaky for Brunswick.
It failed to hold a lead in the sprint medley. Senior Brianna Neitzel chased down Amherst freshman Lindsay Sands, but gave back the lead when Neitzel faded in the last 50 meters. Amherst won the event in 1:51.28-1:52.24.
Neitzel was then denied a third straight title in the 100-meter dash. She was chased down at the line, losing to Sandusky’s Dorresha Green 12.54-12.55.
“I clearly wasn’t warmed up for the 100,” Neitzel said. “I’m out of it a bit today, I guess. Normally, I’m warmed up and ready to go. The sprint medley was my fault. That was because of me taking off too fast the first 200 (24.1) and I suffered in the end. That was a mistake I’ll never make again, for a good reason clearly.”
Brunswick came back to win the last two events on the track.
Megan Kidd, Sam Eberwein, Morgan Silinsky, Anastasia Fitzroy clocked 1:10.24 for the shuttle hurdles to defeat Amherst (1:10.61). A year ago, Kidd, Eberwein, Fitzroy and Brianna Moss were only seventh (1:13.95).
Gabby Maslowski, Alyssa Biedron, Savannah Skocic and Neitzel combined talents to win the 4×400 relay (4:04.93) where Medina finished third (4:10.53).
The overall victory wasn’t secured until the completion of the pole vault, which concluded about 10 minutes after the 4×4. Medina finished third (23-6), while Brunswick was fifth (23-0).
“We knew what the stakes were heading into the mile relay,” Neitzel said. “I just told my coach that we would try to beat Medina. Some people get very intense about the rivalry, but I don’t look at that way. It’s friendly competition.”
Overall, the Brunswick girls finished in the top five for 10 out of 16 events.
Medina senior Anna Boyert had a stellar day. She had the second fastest 1,600 meters (5:01.28) in meet history after recording the fourth-fastest 3,200 (school-record 10:59.89) in the morning session.
“I was trying to get under both barriers, get under 11 flat and under five flat,” said Boyert, a Penn State recruit. “It was nice to get under that barrier in the 3,200, but I still have a lot of room for improvement. I didn’t go out as fast as I wanted to (in the 1,600), but that’s OK. Every race is a good learning experience.”
Boyert defeated Brunswick senior Selena Pasadyn (11:25.42) in the 3,200 and defending champ Alison Work (5:09.03) of Sylvania Northview in the 1,600.
Brunswick junior Tyler Menear was the class of the boys 1,600 (4:25.59) as he pulled away from Kenston’s Owen Norley (4:30.30) in the last lap. Menear was second in the event last year to Medina’s Robert Robinson.
“I just tried to stay out in front,” Menear said. “If I felt I heard him (Norley) behind me I put in a little surge. The cold conditions made it tough today. I could feel it in my chest. It made it tough with the wind in your face.
“My track season’s gone well. I was sick for most of cross country season, but things started going better for me by districts. I just wanted to carry it over to track. I’m working a lot harder this year.”
Menear split 4:29 for the 4×1,600, which the Brunswick boys won but was ultimately disqualified for a uniform violation. One of the four team members didn’t have matching compression shorts.
The Medina boys’ six-year reign as meet champion ended as the Bees finished fourth with 57 points. Brunswick (49) was fifth, but would have placed third without the disqualification.
Contact Paul Heyse at (440) 329-7135 or firstname.lastname@example.org.