Fresh off an indoor track state championship, Bishop Hendricken has carried that momentum into the outdoor track season.
The Hawks are currently 8-0 in the Central Division, which includes an 83-71 victory over Classical – the team they edged out for the indoor title – on April 8. The Purple are 8-1 overall.
On Monday, Hendricken geared up for what figured to be another tough meet against La Salle, which came in with only one loss at the hands of Classical. Instead, the Hawks stepped up in a big way, knocking off the rams 122-32. Hendricken also picked up a 139.5-14.5 victory over Toll Gate and a 154-0 victory over St. Patrick Academy to stay undefeated.
“I was very happy,” Hendricken head coach Jim Doyle said. “Obviously the sprinters were strong, and our field events were very strong. We’re coming along as a team. It was a tough day, weather-wise – windy, cold, damp – and you wouldn’t think there would be good performances. But there were.”
The Hawks had standout showing in many events, but the distance and sprinting events were the ones that shone through.
Knowing that La Salle could potentially score some big points in the 800, 1,500 and 3,000, Doyle decided to put some of his top performers in both events, something he doesn’t typically do in a dual meet.
It paid dividends.
Junior Colin Tierney took first in the 1,500 and second in the 3,000, while senior Tyler Henseler was third in the 1,500 and fourth in the 3,000. Senior Connor Doyle was first in the 3,000, while fellow senior Alex Doherty was fifth in the 1,500 with his best time of the season.
Doyle also grabbed second in the 800, while sophomore Jared Boulanger grabbed third in the same event.
“Colin Tierney, Connor Doyle and Tyler Henseler did distance doubles,” Jim Doyle said. “I don’t generally do that in a dual meet. We knew that if we didn’t with La Salle they could get some numbers on us in the distance events, so we had those guys double. Those guys stepped up.”
The distance team figures to be a huge strength going forward. To go along with the indoor title for Hendricken, it also captured the cross country state championship in the fall. Other long distance contributors are Grant Gauthier, Collin Manning and Greg Beaudette.
In the sprints, Hendricken also rose to the occasion. Perhaps nobody stood out more than sophomore Lee Moses, who won the 100 in a time of 10.8 seconds. While it hasn’t been confirmed, it may be a school record.
“Lee Moses ends up running a 10.8,” Doyle said. “Obviously he had the wind to his back. I don’t know if it would be considered a school record. But he was flying. We’ll have to look at it to see.”
Moses was also part of the 4x100 team that captured first place, along with senior Marco DelVecchio, junior John Cute and sophomore Power Kanga.
Kanga also finished first in the 200, while Cute was second in the same event. DelVecchio took second in the 100.
“We expected a real tough meet, and the kids wanted to perform well,” Doyle said. “Some kids really stepped it up.”
Hendricken’s 4x400 team of sophomore Andrew Geremia and seniors Matt Lombardi, Marcus Swift and Romario Rousseau captured first, while Rousseau took second in the 400, Ian MacLeod took third and Lombardi took fourth.
In the hurdles, Hendricken scored on Monday but has some work to do if it wants to contend with Classical’s hurdlers at the state meet. In the 100 hurdles, junior Gage Powell took second and senior Brendan McNamara took fourth. In the 300, McNamara took third and Powell took fourth.
Classical, though, may be able to close the gap between the two teams in those events. In indoor, there is only one hurdling event. In outdoor, with the two events, the Purple gain an advantage on Hendricken.
The same thing can be said about the jumping events and the pole vault. Hendricken has some strong jumpers and vaulters, but it still probably trails Classical. In outdoor, the triple jump is added as an event.
Moses took first in the long jump on Monday, and freshman Brian Shamblen took second. Freshman Craig Conway tied for fourth. In the triple jump, Powell was first, sophomore Ben Murphy was second and junior Will Parmlee was third.
Murphy took second in the high jump, while Parlmee was fifth. In the pole vault, McNamara was second, while junior Jeff Langlais was third.
“The events that Classical is strong in is the hurdles, so now you add a hurdle event and we’re weakened,” Doyle said. “Now they have the 300 hurdles and the 110 hurdles. They’re also strong in the jumping events. You had the long jump, now you have the triple jump. They have a pretty decent pole vaulter, we’re not great in the pole vault.”
In the throwing events, Hendricken is hoping to score some points, but it’s not quite as deep as it’s been in years past. It excelled in the shot put on Monday, getting a first place from junior Ben Nelson, a second from freshman Chris Storti, a third from junior Evan Nelson and a fifth from sophomore Connor Hurst.
In the hammer, senior Matt Casbarro was second, junior Chris Celona was third and senior Brandon Amo was fourth. Senior Nick DeCiantis took first in the discus, and fellow senior Shawn McAssey came in third. In the javelin, senior Aaron Hubert took second, and sophomore Joe Christianson took third.
Hendricken did not score in the shot or the hammer during the indoor meet.
“We’re not as strong as what we have been in the past,” Doyle said of the throwing events. “We have a lot of young guys. Our hammer and the shot, those appear to be our strongest events. We’re kind of rebuilding. And we have a young team of javelin throwers, and one guy in the discus.”
It all amounts to what has already been a strong regular season, and what will the team hopes will be another championship when the state meet comes around in June. The Hawks beat Classical by 10 points – 75-65 – in indoor, and will need some above-and-beyond performances to get it done again.
Other teams could also be in the mix. For now, though, Hendricken is cruising along, winning and getting itself prepared for the postseason.
“Outlook, we have a good team, but it’s going to be similar to indoors,” Doyle said. “We’ll be in a team battle, probably with Classical. North Kingstown, East Providence, those schools have great teams. It’s going to come down to who performs the best that day.”