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Island boys and girls spring into track season

Spring — each week we look forward to warmer weather and putting winter behind us. And the battle goes on, with a few warmer days here and there, peppered with colder days as winter tries to hold on.

They say March comes in like a lion, and during the first couple weeks of varsity spring track we have had our share of March winds to contend with as we train outdoors.

This will be the second year varsity spring track has been offered at Shelter Island High School in recent years. Last year, the varsity boys and girls track teams ran as independent athletes, and although both teams competed in league meets, the teams were not allowed to score. This year will be different, since both teams will compete in league dual meets against Babylon, Center Moriches, Mattituck, Port Jefferson, Ross and Southold-Greenport for the League 8 Championship title.

Both teams will travel with the Southold-Greenport teams to share transportation costs and we will consider Southold’s brand new track our “home” track. The Southold track was built during the spring of 2018, but it wasn’t ready for competition until the spring track season was over.

We will join Southold-Greenport in christening their track when we compete against them in our first dual meet on Tuesday, March 26.

Coach Toby Green will be coaching a roster of 16 athletes for the varsity boys team. The squad consists of sophomore Jalill Carter, freshman Pacey Cronin, 7th grader Hayden Davidson, sophomore Domingo Gil Jr., sophomore Jason Green, sophomore Tyler Gulluscio, freshman Michael Hand, junior Jonas Kinsey, team captain junior Kal Lewis, junior Luke Lowell-Liszanckie, sophomore Nicholas Mamisashvili, junior Alberto Morales, sophomore Theo Olinkiewicz, team captain senior Michael Payano, sophomore Daniel Schulteis and sophomore Brandon Velasquez..

I will be coaching the varsity girls team with a roster of seven athletes. Returning for the girls team are juniors Lyng Coyne and team captain Emma Gallagher. Joining the spring track squad this year are freshmen Ariana Carter, Daria Kolmogorova and Olivia Overstreet, who rolled over from the varsity winter track program, and newcomers 8th grader Andrea Napoles and 8th grader Madison Springer.

This year we will be expanding the events we compete in for both the boys and girls teams. Last year, the boys and girls teams competed primarily in the running events, including the 100-/110-meter dash, 200-meter dash, 400-meter dash, 800-meter run, 1,500-/ 1,600-meter run and the 3,000-/3,200-meter run. Two of the boys threw shot put and discus.

This season we will be adding hurdles to our event selection in the form of the 100-/110-meter hurdles, the 400-meter hurdles as well as the steeplechase. We will also be adding jumps in the form of the long jump, high jump, triple jump and pole vault.

In reviewing the Shelter Island School track and field records, there are no performances recorded for the steeplechase or the pole vault, so it appears that this is the first time these events are being offered to Shelter Island athletes.

Both programs will provide our student-athletes opportunities to learn, compete and grow in events they have never done before, as well as improve upon events they are familiar with.

It will be a challenging, but fun season, for both coaches and athletes. We much look forward to it and will keep you posted as our season progresses.