ORONO — Ryan Bender, Ralph Magnani and Aaron Miller of the Mount Desert Island High School indoor track team became individual PVC Champions at the meet Saturday, helping propel the team to a runner-up finish. Brad Witham was named boys’ coach of the year, and the Trojan girls finished fifth of 14 teams.
“It’s been awhile since we’ve been up there in the rankings,” Witham said. The runner-up finish was the first for the team in many years. “To have the meet come down to a battle of the relays seemed fitting,” he said.
Magnani broke his own facility record, set earlier this season, in the 800-meter run with a time of 1:59.5 seconds. Bender was the champion in the long jump, setting a new facility record with 20 feet 10 inches. He also won the triple jump with 40 feet 9 inches. Miller won the high jump with 5 feet 10 inches, successfully defending his 2014 title in the event.
Aidan Robichaud-Ward, Josh Bloom, Jose Chumbe and Magnani were third in the 4×800-meter relay with 8:59.22. Matt Hanna was runner-up in the 55-meter hurdles with 8.35 seconds, a time that broke the standing facility record (new record goes to Charles Moody of Old Town, 8.31 seconds).
Brandon Murphy was fifth in the 55-meter dash with 6.97 seconds. Robichaud-Ward was fourth in the one-mile run with 5:00.37. Murphy and Hanna were second and fourth in the 400-meter dash, respectively, with 55.25 seconds and 56.05 seconds.
Murphy, Hanna, Bender and Magnani still hold the facility record in the 4×200-meter relay and were state champions in the event last year, but at this meet were disqualified for a lane violation. “It was a valuable lesson,” Witham said, “to go in there and fight and not be overly confident.”
Croix Albee was sixth in shot put with 38 feet 10 inches.
For the MDI girls, Catherine Ding was tenth in the preliminary round for the 55-meter hurdles with 10.34 seconds. Ashley Anderson was fourth in the 55-meter dash with a time of 7.82 seconds. Caroline Driscoll was runner-up in the one-mile run with 5:31.99 and in the two-mile run with 12:08.07. Anderson was fourth in the 400-meter dash with 1:02.94 and the 200-meter dash with 28.03 seconds. “Caroline is ending her senior season on a good note,” Witham said. Anderson, a freshman, “has so much promise,” he said. “She’s very adept, especially at the 400.”
Ding, Mackenzie Hanna, Jennifer Clemens and Driscoll were fifth in the sprint 4×200-meter relay with 2:04.00. Riley Mooers was fourth in shot put with 29 feet 6.25 inches. Delia Hallett and Mackenzie Hanna placed 12th and 14th, respectively, in shot put. Clemens was seventh in triple jump with 31 feet 8.25 inches.
Next up, the state Class B meet is set for Monday, Feb. 16, at 10 a.m. at Bates College in Lewiston.