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Mariner track halts Beacon’s win streak at 73

Bre Kusen leaps over a hurdle in the Cape Middle School Relays April 28. DAN COOK PHOTO
May 5, 2017

Wow ... It's been an emotional roller coaster the past week in my Beacon track world. Friday night, April 28, my 4-by-200-meter relay gals ran a new school record and the sixth-best time in the nation in 1:49.3, opening eyes in the track and field world. Then on May 2, at a quad meet with Beacon, Mariner, Chipman and Dover, Beacon’s dual-meet streak, dating back 10 years, was ended at 73.

All good things eventually come to an end. I told the gals about the UConn women’s basketball team that got beat this season to snap their streak of over 100. The tough Mariner girls topped Beacon 57-52 by winning eight events to Beacon’s five events. Nataleigh Hunter had a big day, winning the 55 hurdles in 8.8, the 100-meter dash in 13.0 and the 200-meter dash in 27.4 to lead her Mariner team to victory. Sam Jacona ran 6:06 in the 1,600 meters, while Reagan Ciabattoni won the triple jump in 29-feet-9-inches. Mariner also received big points in the throws and swept the 800 meters to seal the deal.

Beacon won both the relays, and the Daisey girls won two events, with Aya taking the high jump at 4-feet-10-inches and Amaya taking the long jump in a new personal best of 15-feet-11-inches. Bre Kusen took top honors in the 400-meter dash in a new best of 1:03.4.

If I had to lose to someone, I would rather lose to Mariner and coach Kenny Riedel and assistant John Horst, as they are still a Cape district team, which means some of his kids might join my indoor high school girls’ program.

Beacon had a great ride, captured a lot of victories and is well respected in the state. I told the girls, who sat in a circle in front of their three coaches with tears in their eyes, that they should let it be a life lesson, learn from it and be better people from this experience. Sports are tough, and, in most cases, someone has to lose, and that day it was us.

Rich McKinnon Invitational

On Friday, May 5, the Mt. Pleasant High School track and field team will host the annual McKinnon Middle School Invitational Track Meet in memory of Richard McKinnon, who retired as a teacher, coach and athletic director at Mt. Pleasant High School in 2004. Rich passed away in February 2006 after a 10-year battle with heart disease. The Richard McKinnon Track Invitational is a way to honor Rich’s memory by hosting an event based on Rich’s principles - competition, sportsmanship, teamwork and striving for excellence. Rich McKinnon’s son, Greg McKinnon, helped served as the honorary starter for the first few races. The Mt. Pleasant High School track team made a donation to the Rich McKinnon Scholarship Fund at MPHS and to the American Heart Association. The MPHS track and field team will run the meet, and more than 300 spectators will enjoy an afternoon of quality competition among area middle schools. The Beacon girls will be part of the action in Wilmington along with 14 other teams from Wilmington, Philadelphia, New Jersey and Maryland. Beacon won the meet both times they competed in the past, in 2013 and 2015, dominating the relays and field events. If rain postpones the meet, it will be likely moved to Monday evening.

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