CT Athletes Shake Up National Ranking at State Open

The Girls

It was unlikely any team could have caught Greenwich in the battle for the team title.  They just had too many cards in the deck which included two Aces.  Everyone knew about All American Emily Philippides, but when you add in Genevieve Dewinter, who was part of their All American 4 x 800m relay last year, you have a one- two punch that few teams have ever had.  

Philippides went right to the front in the 1000m and managed to easily win in 2:58.08.  She came back an hour later and came from behind to anchor the sprint medley to a gold medal with a time of 4:18.18.  She then teamed up with Dewinter to finish 2nd in the 4 x 400m in 4:03.28.

While many were watching Philippides, Dewinter was forming a book end with nearly matching points in the meet.  Dewinter anchored the 4 x 800m with All American swimmer, Meghan Lynch, Hetty McMillan and  Zoe Harris who were part of the 4 x 800m last year to a 2nd place finish.  She then came back to run the 26th fastest time in the country in the 600m, winning in 1:35.93 before ending the meet running the 4 x 400m.

Greenwich also took eight points in the pole vault when Lia Zavattaro cleared a season best of 11'6 to take 2nd place.  
"I'm so proud of these girls" Coach Evan Duban stated.  "Its one thing to be good on paper, but to pull this off and execute it the day of is just a great accomplishment."

The only meet record of the day was set by Glastonbury when their girls 4 x 800m made up of Kaylen Hughes, Angela Braga, Grace Sparrow and Erin McGill knocked off nearly a second from their team's 12 year old record to run the US #13 with a 9:21.45 final time.

Aisha Gay of Hamden had a fantastic day in the sprints.  She started off the day in the 55m running over a tenth of a second faster than her best with a 2nd place time of 7.26.  But then the senior faced the deepest 300m field in State Open history.  For the first time ever, four girls broke 41 second, but Gay was the fastest of them all running the 2nd fastest time in State Open history with a 39.56.  She then finished off her day running a 57.2 second anchor in the victorious 4 x 400m.  

The Hamden team made up of seniors Emma Cayward, Andreya Gardner  and junior Alysia Joseph qualified for NBIN EE with a time of 4:01.05 which broke into the top 50 times in the US this season.  

In the high jump, three girls qualified for the NBIN championship sections.  Allyson Lewis of NFA cleared 5'6 with no misses in the competition to be declared the winner with Patricia Mroczkowski of Berlin and Bloomfield's Monique Anderson clearing the same height and finishing 2nd and 3rd.  

Connecticut became spoiled following the exploits of Staples' All American distance runner Hannah Debalsi who is now a sophomore at Stamford.  Breaking 11 minutes in the 3200m is fairly rare and Debalsi did it just about every time she stepped on the Hillhouse track.  Well it looks like we have another female distance star to chase Debalsi's "unbreakable" records. Sophomore Elizabeth Stockman of Rocky Hill ran the 2nd fastest time in State Open history with a 10:45.29, which is less than five seconds off Debalsi's Open record.  Just like Debalsi, she went right to the front, ran the entire race by herself and nearly lapped the entire field.  Stockman's time is the second fastest sophomore time in the country and is the 10th fastest overall.

Stockman isn't the only runner we can look forward to break records in the future.  Freshman Tess Stapleton of Fairfield Ludlowe took the 55HH running 8.36 in the finals and 8.35 in the trials to crack the top 50 in the country.  Not only that, her time is the 4th fastest freshman time in the United States.

In the high jump,  Stapleton tied for 7th with a leap of 5'2 and had a rare off day in the long jump with a 16'4. But her best jump this season of 17'10 in the long jump and 5'2 in the high jump both crack the top 10 freshman  performances in the country.  

The season will continue for the the top six finishers in each event (except the pv and smr) who have qualified for the New England Championships in Boston on March 3rd.