Colchester County athletes solid through day one of district meet

Ryan Cooke
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TRURO – Excitement was high Friday morning as the NSSAF Colchester/Antigonish-Guysborough District Track and Field Meet brought hundreds of people to the TAAC Grounds.

 

It was a cold and overcast day, but that didn’t stop spectators lining the sides of the track to watch competitors from the two districts compete to earn a spot in next weekend’s regional meet in Stellarton.

Colchester County was well represented with members from several junior high and high schools earning top times and distances through the first day of events.

With 60 athletes in competition, South Colchester Academy brought its largest contingent ever to the event. Hanging around the field, the Wolves athletes stuck together, as Wolves do. Rarely was there a South Colchester sweatshirt without another nearby.

On the track, it was a similar story.

“Our runners had a really great day today,” said Leah Roop, an assistant coach for the track and field team. “We’ve had a lot of kids running great times, personal bests, and putting themselves in good positions to qualify for regionals.”

In field events, CEC orange tore up the leader board, with most of its throwers and three-quarters of its javelin team posting qualifying performances.

“A big strength of ours is just in sheer numbers alone,” said CEC head coach Iain Lapointe before the competition started. “We’re the biggest school in the region, so we send the most competitors. Our throwers are extremely dedicated too, practicing throughout the winter.”

It’s a busy time of year for the athletes, many of whom are coming off long seasons in other sports.

“The kids love it,” Roop said. “It’s all about getting out and being active, and pushing yourself to beat personal bests. They’ve done really well so far.”

It’s also a busy weekend for organizers and volunteers, Lapointe said.

“It’s one of those things that takes 20 people to run up front, with another 20 or more behind the scenes. It’s all been running smoothly here though, everyone is doing a great job.”

In comparison to other districts, the Colchester and Antigonish/Guysborough regions are shorter on numbers, hence why the two combine. On top of a healthy dose of competition, it also provides the kids a chance to come together and make new friendships.

High-fives and well wishes were abundant on Friday afternoon, as competitors showed good sportsmanship after each race, toss or jump.

In between heats, a group of junior high track runners gathered near the finish line. All but one of the boys were from Riverside, while the other was from Musquodoboit.

“We’re all pretty good friends,” said Noah Pellerine, of Riverside. “We all know each other and see each other at races all the time.”

“We like to compete against each other though,” said Josh Isenor, from Musquodoboit, as he grinned at his friends.

Events will kick off again today at 9 a.m., with more Colchester County athletes aiming to secure their spot in next week’s regional competition. A full list of Colchester County qualifiers will follow the weekend’s district event.

 

 

Organizations: NSSAF Colchester/Antigonish-Guysborough District Track, South Colchester Academy

Geographic location: Colchester County, Stellarton, Riverside Musquodoboit Guysborough regions

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