Walpole Track and Field Team Ends Another Successful Spring Season


A Walpole runner competes in the 100m dash at the Division II State Meet.

Gina Conti

A Walpole runner competes in the 100m dash at the Division II State Meet.

The Division II Track and Field State Meet was held May 27 at Whitman-Hanson Regional High School.  Walpole had many great athletes perform their best to compete with higher competition.  A total of nine medals were brought home, six boys, and three girls.

The first race was the boys 2 Mile, which was exceptionally quick.   Senior Zach Ganshirt received a seventh place medal with a PR time of 9:45.25 seconds.  In the Girls 2 Mile freshman Lucy Lynch, sophomore Kristen Coyne, and junior Megan Peterson all ran extremely well.  Considering they ran in scorching heat.  Lynch and Coyne ran within one second of their PR’s, while Peterson PR’ed by 2 seconds and finished with a time 12:21 seconds.  In the one mile, sophomore Gina Conti ran a PR with a time of 5:15.86 seconds, to place 5 overall, but missed qualifying for the All State Meet by 1 place.

The sprinters and jumpers were the most successful athletes at the meet with a total of four medals.  Junior PJ Hayes cruised to victory in the 100m dash prelims, with a time of 10.92 seconds.  Hayes then moved on to compete in the finals, where he placed 2 overall behind King Philips Charles Ruffin (10.73).  Because Hayes placed second with a final time of 10.91 seconds, he qualified for the All State Meet, where he is seeded third.  Hayes, along with his three teamates; Connor McCarthy, Kemble Lindh, and Taka Kondo, all ran successful 4x100m dash relay and recorded a sixth place finish.  Senior Erin McCarthy was by far the teams best performer for the day.  McCarthy placed third overall, qualified for the All State Meet, and broke her second Walpole High School record in the 200m dash with a time of 25.94 seconds.  Later McCarthy, Maddy Shea, Gabbi Petruzziello, and Gina Conti competed in the 4x400m relay to break another school record with a time of 4:10.52 seconds.  The relay team came in 9 overall, missing a medal by less than 1 second.  Shea also competed in the 200m dash, as well as the long jump, placing 2 overall, with a season best of 17′ 0.50.  Shea qualified for the All State Meet for the second season in a row.  Junior Connor McCarthy and senior Conor Murtaugh competed in the 110m hurdles. Murtaugh and McCarthy  placed fourth and fifth.  Since Murtaugh finished fourth overall in the final heat, he advanced to the All State Meet.  McCarthy did not perform his best in the final heat, even though he earned a fifth place medal he will not advance.  McCarthy also earned 8th place in the triple jump, jumping 41-08.50.  Collecting 3 medals from the 4×100, 110hurdles, and triple jump, Connor is an athlete with many talents, just like his sister Erin.

The All State Championship Meet was held at Fitchburg College on Tuesday June 5, 2012.  The Championship meet was originally scheduled for Saturday June 2, 2012 but was eventually pushed to Monday, and then eventually Tuesday due to weather concerns.

Walpole only brought four athletes to All State Championship.  Seniors Erin McCarthy, Conor Murtaugh and juniors Maddy Shea, and PJ Hayes.  Unfortunately they did not do exceptionally well. Erin McCarthy placed 13 overall in the 200m dash with a final time of 26.78 seconds.  Although McCarthy’s track career came to an end, she went out on a high note by recording a PR.  Conor Murtaugh ran the 110m hurdles with a time of 15.55 seconds to place 15.  Maddy Shea competed in the long jump, jumping 16-04.00 which was not good enough to place.  The biggest upset of the meet was perhaps the number 2 seed in the boys 100m dash.  PJ Hayes was seeded 2 in the final heat with a time of 10.85 seconds, and had a great chance to win the All Scholastic title.  Hayes was accused of false starting, and was eventually pulled from the heat and was not allowed to compete for the state title.

The Walpole Track and Field team has had many successful moments throughout the season, but also experienced many downfalls.  The All State Meet did not go as well as it could have and the team will look forward to next years Indoor Season with a positive outlook.  The Indoor Season had more success at the All State meet, receiving two medals and advanced to the New England Championship.  But as the team looks back on the season, athletes all agree that the spring was a successful season because of the helpful coaches and ambitious captains.