TAUNTON — The indoor track and field season is underway, and all three Greater Taunton area teams are eager to prove themselves, break personal and school records and qualify for states.
For some runners who did cross country, it’s a chance to build on their progress from the fall, while other runners and throwers will look to build on their success from last year or make a strong impression on their debut for newcomers.
Here’s a look at the local runners and throwers to keep an eye on this winter.
The Tigers have continuously been building and improving overall as a program the past couple of years, and with a talented core of young athletes, they look set to threaten the traditional Hockomock hierarchy for years to come.
On the boys side, speedy sophomore sprinter Dmitrius Shearrion is off to a hot start, finishing sub seven seconds in the 55 meter dash for the first time in a meet against Milford and also is proving a valuable member of the 4×400 meter relay team along with Conal Scully, who currently is the top ranked runner in the Hockomock in the 600 meter, and Andrew Cali, who also won the mile against the Scarlet Hawks, and GJ Mualis, who took first place in the 300 meter.
For throwing, Peter Moore is Taunton’s main man, and the junior finished 10th overall at the most recent Hockomock meet and will look to keep pushing himself to further success.
On the girls side, the UMass Lowell-bound Nia Mainer-Smith continues to be one of the league’s most dominant runners, winning the 600 meter against Milford in her most recent meet and helping the 4×400 meter relay team, the event she will be competing in at the collegiate level, to victory. Also among the league’s elite is Emersyn DePonte, who comes into the indoor track season off a record-smashing cross country campaign, finishing second and third respectively in the mile and two races against the Scarlet Hawks, setting new personal records in both. Right behind her in the two mile was Colby Dunham, who also is coming off an accomplished fall season and will look to strongly figure into the equation for Taunton in the years to come, while Caelen O’Leary is off to a perfect start to the season in the 300 meter in the Hockomock.
Throwing wise, freshman Adrianna Amaral is leading the way for the Tigers, setting a new personal record and a Taunton season-best of 22-09.00 against Milford, and will look to continue to grow among the young throwing core for the Tigers.
The Trojans are back in indoor track action for the first time in two years and look hungry to make some waves in the Southeastern Conference.
On the boys side, Kauan Bento is off to a hot start as he took first place in the high jump in a meet against Dartmouth, earning a qualifying time after previously earning a qualifying time in the 55 meter dash in a tri-meet against Brockton and Durfee. Jack Wilczewski won the 1000 meter in the meet against the Indians, earning himself a qualifying time as well, while Rocco Ricciotti won hurdles, with Ian Farrell finishing right behind him, and Declan Hetrick finished top of the pack in shot put.
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The Falcons are looking to make noise in the South Coast Conference and have already had some impressive showings to start the season.
For the boys, Josh Rebello has looked well from the start, finishing fifth overall in the 800 meter at the MSTCA Distance Classic while Graeme Sullivan set a personal record in the mile, going sub-five minutes with a time of 4:58. Michael Lavigne and Thomas Dumke have also performed well. Kevin Gousie led the throwing effort for D-R, setting a new personal record of over 36 feet at the Distance Classic.
For the girls, Sarah Charbonneau and Angelina Cabral both set personal records in the 800 meter at the Distance Classic, as did Lindsay Allard and Zoey Jestude in the mile. Madelyn Kelley is off to a strong start in shotput, throwing for 27 feet, five inches at the Distance Classic, leading her to a 16th place finish out of 55.
Taunton Daily Gazette sports reporter Cameron Merritt can be reached at email@example.com. You can follow him on Twitter at @CamMerritt_News. Support local journalism by purchasing a digital or print subscription to the Taunton Daily Gazette today.