Track Makes Strong Run at District Title But Can’t Answer Patriots’ Dominance in Field Events

Posted April 21, 2017 / Last updated April 25, 2017

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Reed Meric explodes out front during the 800 meter race.

Reed Meric exploded out front during the 800 meter race. He finished more than three seconds ahead of his competitors.

Jesuit’s track and field team gave John Curtis all they could handle at the District Championships on Thursday, April 20 at Tad Gormley Stadium, but the Patriots built a big enough cushion in early field events  to withstand a strong run down the stretch by the Jays on the track. The final tally: John Curtis 158, Jesuit 131.

Curtis outscored Jesuit 89-32 in the seven field events, all of which took place prior to the running events.

Half of Jesuit’s field points came in the pole vault, where Michael Fitzsimmons took top honors with a jump of 13 feet. Teammate William Lopez placed third in that event, clearing 12 feet. Jesuit’s other field points came from Benton Moore (2nd in high jump, 8 points), Jarod Larriviere (3rd in discus, 6 points), Richie Foley (6th in javelin, 1 point), and Dave Jackson (6th in triple jump, 1 point). The Jays did not place in the top six in long jump or shot put.

It was with the start of the running events that the Jays began to shine, but they never could get quite within striking distance of the lead.

By the time the 3,200-meter race came around, the Jays had been mathematically eliminated. That didn’t stop them from competing, though. John Kling managed to pick up four points in that race with a 4th-place finish, and teammate Michael Williams picked up an additional point by finishing sixth.

Then, in the evening’s final event, Reed Meric, Hayden Ricca, Max Bell, and Garrett Crumb closed out the competition with a blistering time of 3:26.31 to win the 4×400 meter relay.

“That’s a fantastic time,” said coach Rudy Horvath ’86. “That’s right on pace with last year’s group, and we had to run Jandon Briscoe in order to do that.”

Briscoe was his usual spectacular self on the evening, accounting for 28 individual points. The University of Michigan signee won both the 200-meter and 400-meter races, and placed second in the 100 meters. He also teamed up with Brennan Jeffrey, Garrett Crumb, and Richmond Wall to pick up a third place finish in the 4×200 meter relay.

Jesuit’s 4×100 relay team (Tripp Kropog, Benton Moore, Ashton Perkins, and Richmond Wall) also had a solid outing, placing 4th.

Meric, part of the 4×400 team that closed out the evening, also captured an individual title. The senior torched the field in the 800 meters, crossing the finish line at 1:57.62, more than three seconds ahead of his nearest competitor.

Perhaps the breakout star of the night was Jacob Torres, who won both the 110- and 300-meter hurdling events. The sophomore wasn’t the fastest sprinter in either race, but his flawless technique over the hurdles allowed him to best the competition.

The district meet serves as the qualifying event for next week’s regional competition. Finishing in fourth place or higher in an event punches an individual’s or relay team’s ticket to the tournament.

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