Girls Outdoor Track Races For Improvements


Danielle Levya

The senior and junior Captains pose for a photo.

Last year, Girls track dissapointed with a 3-4 record; however, with new Captains seniors Maddy Shea, Megan Peterson, Michele Monahan and junior Gina Conti, there is promise for the new season.Unlike the indoor season were the girls competed against 3 weak teams first, they are going against 3 tough teams first, Coach Conor Cashman “Similar to last year, our schedule is very front loaded with tough teams at the beginning of the season. I would like to start the season competitive against the teams that are at the top of the Herget.”  The first three meets the girls will be racing against tough competitors, Weymouth, Natick and Wellesley.

Distance and mid distance are powerful areas for the girls, similar to the indoor season. For mid distance, Conti will return running the 400 and 800 meter races. Conti ran the 600 this past winter, her best time was a 1:36, which is now the school record.  Conti is a big point scorer for the Rebels in the 400 and 800 events. Junior Megan Jenkins will also be seen as a big point scorer for the girls due to her performance in the Winter season running the 600 meter race, her personal record in the 600 was 1:45.01. With her experience in mid distance, she will be joining Conti to run the 400 or the 800 in the upcoming season.

In the distance events, senior captain Megan Peterson will be leading the girls in the mile and two mile. Peterson reached her best times in the Winter season this year, 5:41 and 12:13. Sophomore Lucy Lynch will also be a contributor to the score in the mile and the two mile, her best times being 5:39 and 12:23, respectively. Junior Kristen Coyne has also helped score points for the girls in the distance events.

Discus will also be a strength for the girls, with returning senior Captain Michelle Monahan, who holds the record for Walpole throwing a 104′ 4″. But the girls will also be missing key athletes in the throwing events, especially alumni Lizzy Almeda, Steph DeSantis and Suzy Gallivan. DeSantis will be missed in javelin, in which she holds the school record of 113′. Monahan might be stepping up to fill spots of these alumni athletes to also throw shot put and possibly javelin on top of discus. Almeda will also be missed on throwing vectors: she had the farthest distance for the girls last year throwing a distance of 31’10.50″.  Shotput will be a weak area for the girls with few experienced athletes, but junior Ana Orfanidis will be returning to help the new comers fill in the shoes of the alumni. “I am a little worried about the lack of girls we have right now to throw,” said Monahan.

Long jump is also going to be a strong event for the girls in the field. Despite the loss of Erin McCarthy and Savonna Small-Brown, senior Captain Maddy Shea will lead the girls, looking to improve on her PR jumping a distance of 17′ 1.75″. Junior Olivia O’Hara and senior captain Jacqui Conley are returning this season to help fill in the gaps of the loss of McCarthy and Small-Brown, and Conley and O’Hara will also be competing in hurdles. With the loss of senior Nicole Browne, who decided not to participate this season, hurdles will be a weak area for the girls on the track.

As for sprints, McCarthy was a big contributor for the girls last year with Shea. McCarthy holds the record in the 200 meter race for Walpole High with a time of 25.94 amd was a top point scorer for the girls in the past. Shea also helped contribute to the score with McCarthy in the jumping and sprinting events. “With the lack of depth this year in Maddy’s events this season, we will need to get athletes to fill in,” said Mr. Cashman. Shea will be competing in long jump, 100 and 200 meter dash.  The Rebels will be looking for underclassmen to step up in the jumping and sprinting events.

Monahan said, “I expect that we will do well because we do have a lot of returning talent and some newcomers that look promising.” The girls will be expecting to practice hard from Monday, March 18, to be ready to compete competitively right at the start of the season for their first meet on Thursday, March 28 against Weymouth.