Bangor Sends Most Maine Individuals to New Englands


Michelle Thai Photography

Bangor athletes and coaches at the 2023 New England Championship.

Maddy Thai, Senior Editor

BANGOR–Bangor athletes set multiple school records at the indoor track New England Championship.

On March 4, an impressive number of Bangor track athletes participated in the New England Championship. Ten individuals and two relays competed at Boston’s Reggie Lewis Center. Bangor was the only Maine team with over 8 individual qualifiers.

Two Bangor High School records were shattered at New Englands. Junior Katie McCarthy smashed the school record in the 1000m run, which previously stood for 15 years. Her time of 3:06.72 eclipsed 2008 graduate Jennifer Lucy’s 3:15.05. McCarthy placed 3rd among Maine runners and 16th overall at New Englands.

The 4x200m relay consisted of 4 top sprinters, 3 of whom are in Maine’s 200m dash top 20. Junior Callie Tennett, senior Evelyn Humbert, sophomore Madeline Thai, and senior Anna Connors combined for the second time this season. The first time was on January 26 at EMITL Meet 6B. They broke the school, EMITL league, and UMaine facility records. The previous record was 1:48.40, which Connors anchored almost exactly 3 years earlier as a freshman. Tennett, Humbert, Thai, and Connors snapped the record with a 1:48.08. Thirty-seven days and multiple injuries later, the same squad shaved over a second off of their record. Connors crossed the line at New Englands with 1:47.06 on the clock. She received the baton roughly 15 meters behind and nearly caught the runner in 1st place. All 4 relay members battled injuries while running. Tennett and Thai suffered from shin splints. Thai also dealt with injuries in their knee and foot. Humbert struggled with a tendency to back stiffness. Connors had an ankle sprain for the entire postseason. Despite the entire relay facing ailments, their time was the 4th fastest in Maine history.

Bangor’s 4x800m relay found success as well. Sophomore Jenna Elkadi, freshman Madison McLean, and juniors Alison St. Peter and Sophia Mazzarelli ran a 10:46.61. Even without their 1st- and 3rd-fastest 800m runners, this was their 3rd-best time of the season.

Tennett and Connors ran individual events in addition to their relay. Tennett was the first Bangor runner on the track, competing in the 55m dash. She ran a time of 7.63, a time well under her season average of 7.695 seconds. Tennett upseeded by 7 places, as she was expected to finish 30th and moved up to 23rd. Connors ran in the 300m dash, a race in which she holds the Maine state record. As a junior, she was the 300m dash runner-up at New Englands with a time of 39.16. This year, Connors finished with a 40.46. At this point, she had not fully recovered from her ankle sprain and ran the relay earlier in the meet. Still, Connors placed 5th to earn All-New England Honors.

Junior Maddie Cyr has shown her strength as a middle-distance athlete throughout the season. At EMITL Meet 6B, she ran the 800m dash in 2:39.85, placing 6th among 15 traditional 800m runners. At States, she ran the 400m dash and placed 6th. Her State Meet 400m dash time of 1:02.65 converted to a 1:44.00 seed for the 600m run. At New Englands, she competed in this event for the first time. Cyr matched her seed of 21st overall with a time of 1:46.84. This puts her at number 2 in school history, only behind Jennifer Lucy’s 1:41.52 from the 2007 New England Championship.

Senior Sadie Harrow capped off Bangor’s meet with the 2 mile. Despite it being the penultimate track event, almost all of her teammates stayed to cheer her on. Harrow finished 21st overall with a time of 12:17.36. Although this was not a personal best, Harrow has made impressive progress in her high school career. Her 2023 season best of 11:54.20 is over 14 seconds faster than her 2022 best, and nearly 30 seconds faster than when she was a freshman.

Bangor sent 3 throwers to New Englands, which was more than any other Maine team this year. Senior Josiah Rodriguez upseeded by 9 places for 20th overall. He threw 47-9.25, setting a new lifetime best by nearly a foot. Junior Gage Jones placed 27th with his throw of 44-07.25. On the girls’ side, senior standout Julia Bassi placed 14th with her throw of 35-02.25. This was not a personal best for her, but still far ahead of every other Maine athlete. This season, Bassi was an invaluable athlete, both in and out of competition. For the entire season, Bassi has been a dominant force in the circle. She has thrown in outdoor track for all of high school, but only recently joined the indoor team. Bassi previously swam in the winter. Her shift to indoor proved to be a decisive factor in the championship season. Blowing out her competition, Bassi earned 10 vital points at the State Meet. This was a crucial part of Bangor’s team win. Bangor beat runner-up Scarborough by only 4.5 points. If Bassi had chosen to swim this year, it is very possible that Bangor would have fallen short.

Since Bangor jumps coach Peter Sund could not attend New Englands, sprint coach Garrett Johnson stepped up to help Bangor’s long jumpers. Senior Samantha Erb placed 22nd with a jump of 16-04. Freshman Sophia Chase jumped 16-00.25 for 24th overall. Despite falling short of PRs at New Englands, both Erb and Chase had phenomenal seasons. Erb played basketball through her junior year but made the switch to indoor track and field this season. She was a notable long jumper in the 2022 outdoor season with a best of 15-00.25. Sticking with track and field was undoubtedly the right call. Erb improved her personal best by an unbelievable margin. At the indoor league championship, she jumped 16-09.75 to place 2nd. Chase had no long jumping experience prior to this season. She quickly solidified the title of a top athlete in this event. At Class A States, her personal best of 16-10.50 earned her 2nd place. This also broke the school’s freshman record of 16-06.25. Until States, that record was held by 5-time state champion Alyssa Elliott, who is now a multi athlete at UConn. This season, both Erb and Chase earned 2nd Team All-Conference in the long jump. They are also strong in the 200m dash, as Erb’s season best was 27.88 and Chase’s was 28.00. Their returns in the coming outdoor season will be ones to keep an eye on.