Darien girls track takes team silver at FCIAC East meet

The FCIAC East Division girls track and field championship meet had a silver lining for the Darien Blue Wave, which finished in second place out of eight teams Saturday at the Nick Zeoli Field House in Wilton.

Darien had three individuals claim silver medals, as second place went to K.C. Grady in the 45-meter dash, Eva Finn in the 600-meter run, and Daphne Cutler in the 1,600-meter run.

The sprint medley team of Olivia Stein, Erica Blaze, Abigail Cragin and Cameron Appleby also took second place with a time of 4:25.67, trailing only Ridgefield’s 4:22.12. The SMR’s time was just four seconds off the Darien school record, and Stein’s split of 78.6 seconds on the opening 450 meters was just off the school record as well.

As a team, the Wave scored 85 points to finish in second, edging both Ridgefield (73), and Wilton (62), which were third and fourth, respectively. Ludlowe was the East champ with 113 points.

“Darien had a fantastic team performance today, beating two very good teams in Ridgefield and

Wilton,” head coach Steve Norris said. “Our score was about 20 points more than projected. Many posted best-ever times on a track which is the slowest we run on all year. We now have 45 individual qualifying marks for the FCIAC Championships.”

The FCIAC track and field championship meet will be held at 4:30 p.m. today, Thursday, at the Floyd Little Athletic Center in New Haven, and will be carried live by the HAN Network. It can be seen at HAN.network, darientimes.com, and FCIAC.net, as well as on Frontier Communications’ Vantage Sports Network (Channels 600/1600).

The Wave’s highest scoring event at the East meet was the 600-meter run, with four runners finishing in the top nine.

Finn’s second-place finish was the top showing, as she finished in 1:51.24. Suzanna Alliegro was fourth (1:51.65), Charlotte Sulger was fifth (1:52.22), and Laura Larizza was ninth (1:56.89). Norwalk’s Laura Turner was first in 1:47.80.

Grady was second in the 45-meter dash in 6.55 seconds. She was edged out by Ludlowe’s Maya Mocarski by a small margin, as Mocarski finished in 6.53.

In the 1,600-meter run, Ludlowe’s Keegan Simonsen won in 5:31.74, but the Blue Wave made the best team showing by taking second and third and placing four runners in the top 10.

Cutler was second in 5:35.56, which was her best time by six seconds, with Onora Brown third (5:35.84), Kerry Blatney eighth (6:02.26), and Kimberly Olvany 10th (6:06.24).

Brown, who also finished third in the 3,200-meter run with a time of 12:22.31, was the Wave’s high scorer at the meet.

Also at 3,200 meters, Sophie Hill was sixth (12:57.24), Kara O’Rourke delivered her top career time to finish eighth (13:24.08), and Maggie Doran was 11th (14:35.46).

In the 4x375 relay, Darien’s time of 4:08.01 was good for third place and was just six seconds off the DHS school record. That team included Finn, Alliegro, Charlotte Sulger, and Sally Boucher, and each runner posted their career best splits.

The Wave was also third in the 4x750 relay with Kate Chandler, Hill, Blatney and Olvany finishing in 9:58.48.

In the 4x225, Grady, Blaze, Ashley Hagander and Sulger were fourth in 2:15.28.

Darien did some damage in the 1,000-meter run, led by Cameron Appleby, who was fourth in a season-best 3:20.37. Marley Garfield was 11th (3:34.79), Carson Halabi was 12th (3:34.83) in a career-best time, and Lily Johnston was 15th (3:39.15).

In the 45-meter hurdles, Cragin finished sixth in a career-best 7.99.

The Wave had four pole vaulters finish in the top six, led by Skyler Ford’s third-place finish at 7 feet. Samantha Wagner and Hagander tied for fourth at 6 feet, 6 inches, with Joen Echeverria in sixth place with that same mark.

Brielle Racanelli had Darien’s top performance in the shot out, finishing ninth (26 feet, 5.25 inches), with Hagander 12th (25 feet, 7.25 inches).