Milford, Amherst natives compete for Flash

Granite State Flash, a New Hampshire-based youth track & field program, competed at the USATF Ju­nior Olympics Northeast Regional Championships July 7-10 in Albany, N.Y.

Milford’s Meredith Par­tridge dominated the 11- 12 girls’ discus, throwing a personal record 66 feet, 3 inches to win the event by almost 8 feet ahead of the second-place thrower. She also placed 12th in the shot put (22-2 1/4).

Competing all three of his events on a single day, Am­herst’s Ryan Hauser fought hard for second in the 13- 14 High Jump (5-1), as well as fourth in the 100-meter hurdles (17.40), and sixth in long jump (15-9 3/4).

They were two of 19 Flash athletes from southern New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Vermont competing at Albany University among almost 1,300 other top ath­letes that had previously qualified at Association races in Maine, New Hamp­shire, Vermont, Massachu­setts, Connecticut and New York.

Athletes compete in 2-year age divisions, with top five athletes in each di­vision qualifying for the Na­tional Championship July 25-31 in Sacramento, Calif.

Two Flash girls braved the multi-event Pentathlon, competing in hurdles, high jump, shot put, long jump and the 800-meter run. Hol­lis’ Audrey Murrin (11-12, 1,405 points) and Bedford’s Marie Hamill (13-14, 1,171 points) both finished sev­enth in their respective age division. This was the first time either competed in the pentathlon. Audrey also finished fourth in the high jump (4-1 1/4) and ninth in the long jump (12-5 1/4).

Second places were earned by Fiona Doherty (Manchester) in the 11-12 1,500-meter run (5:16.96) and Addie Berglund (Dur­ham) in the 11-12 3,000-me­ter run (12:12.39). Addie also placed 10th in both the 1,500 (5:49.12) and 800 (2:48.16). Keegan Pepin (Manchester) placed third in the 13-14 Pole Vault (6-0 3/4) and seventh in the 1,500 (5:16.58), with twin sister Katelyn finishing seventh in the 200-meter hurdles (33.53) and eighth in the 800. Sylvia Caddell (Salem) ran dominantly for a fourth in the girls 13-14 800 (2:27) and fifth in the 400 (1:03.07). Lotta Berglund (Durham) took fifth in the 8-and-un­der 1,500 (6:44.43) as well as sixth in the 800 (3:08.47). Del­aney Collins (Ashburnham, Mass.) took a hard-fought seventh (1:06.42) in the 15-16 400, Daphne Bartkus (West­minster, Mass.) placed sixth in the 15-16 high jump (4- 9), and sister Marlena took ninth in 17-18 shot put (26-3) and 10th in javelin (47-2).

On the boys side, Flash also had much success qual­ifying athletes to Nationals with top-five performances. Leading the boys with the sole first-place finish was Kevin Doherty (Manches­ter) in the 8 and Under 800 (2:56.80), holding off two other close finishers. Kevin also took third in the 400 (1:18.25).

In the 13-14 long jump, Spencer Bartkus (West­minster, Mass.) took 13th with a 13-6 3/4 jump. Evan Thornton-Sherman (Water­ford, Vt.) ran smart races to place third in the 11-12 3,000 (10:37.89) and fourth in the 1,500 (4:58.15). Younger brother Andrew placed 10th in 9-10 long jump (11-4 3/4) and 17th in the 100 dash (16.18). Jaden Preston (Man­chester) qualified on with a fifth in 15-16 javelin, hit­ting a personal record with a throw of 97-6. He also fin­ished sixth in high jump at 4-11. Parker Cheyne (Brook­line) ran exciting races for a pair of ninth places in the 9-10 distance events, running a 5:50.77 1,500 and 2:55.58 800. Josan Williams (Concord) earned ninth in 8 and Under Javelin (37-9), 16th in long jump (7-2 3/4) and 17th in the 100 (17.79).