Central Falls indoor track coach Ernest Fennell, right, saw his 4x400 boys’ relay team place second at Saturday’s Rhode Island High School Indoor Track & Field Championships. The silver-winning group, which includes Tuery Galva, Sam Adolfo, Jailson Varela Sanches and Stive Mendes, will see if they duplicate their success at the New Englands, set for this coming Friday at Boston’s Reggie Lewis Center.
PROVIDENCE – Four juniors from Central Falls High came to Saturday’s Rhode Island Indoor Track & Field Championships in search of individual success.
Instead, Yeury Galva, Sam Adolfo, Jailson Varela Sanches and Stive Mendes pooled their talents together and produced a second-place finish in the 4x400 relay. Their time of 3:35.55 was barely two seconds off the winning pace set by North Kingstown.
“They had made states in individual events. I had Sam qualify for the 600 (meter run) and Yeury qualified for the 300, but they weren’t in the top six and we want to go to the New Englands and be all-state,” said Central Falls head coach Ernest Fennell.
The victory supports the idea that the Warriors have a bright future, with chances to shine during the outdoor season this spring, and next year.
“We’re trying to do one event at a time and I knew we were stronger in the 4x400. I pulled them out of the 600 and 300 and told them that we have a chance,” said Fennell. “We didn’t run at the (Sweeney last-chance qualifier). We tried to qualify our 4x200 team and we did, but then we had a couple of kids who weren’t team players. We promote teamwork so we said, ‘Let’s just go run the 4x400.’”
By not running in the Sweeney meet, Fennell was able to buy additional time so that Galva, Adolfo, Sanches and Mendes could get acclimated to running together.
“We worked on handoffs this week. They just weren’t getting out fast enough. We work on our strengths and worry about our weaknesses in the offseason, but it was crunch time,” said Fennell. “We’ve got time right now.”
The officials that run the Providence Career & Technical Academy field house graciously open their facility to teams in the days leading up to meets. To get the kids on an actual track surface is a huge benefit, Fennell believes.
“Every chance we get, we’ll come. They had it this week and we were able to work on our handoffs with our spikes on,” said Fennell. “In (high school) hallways, you’re not getting an accurate time.”
Fennell says that he instituted his game plan on Thursday with Friday serving as an off-day.
“If you don’t have it by now, there’s no sense to keep on working,” said Fennell. “They came in fresh (on Saturday) and set a personal record by three seconds.”
Finishing behind North Kingstown was “a great achievement” in Fennell’s eyes. He explained that the Skippers’ head coach, Brendan Lamboy, was a former C.F. track coach.
“It was a great opportunity to run (against N.K.) and chase after them,” said Fennell.
The Warriors will now turn their attention to the New England Championships, set for Friday at the Reggie Lewis Center in Roxbury, Mass.
“It all just fell together perfectly today,” said Lincoln High coach Sue Carlson after sophomore Dariy Esenov placed second in the boys’ high jump with a leap of six feet, two inches.
Making Esenov’s performance even more remarkable, he entered the state meet with very little training to speak of. A member of the Lions’ junior varsity basketball team, Esenov has mainly utilized his leaping abilities for the hardwood this winter.
“Now he can look forward to outdoor,” Carlson said. “That will be his spring sport so he can devote more time to practicing and perfecting his technique.”
For complete story, see Monday's Pawtucket Times
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