By S. Quinn DeJoy and J. Murrer
Jun. 12, 2019: Fourteen members of the Bronxville track and field teams headed to SUNY Cortland last weekend to compete in the New York State Championships. Bronxville, a Division 2 school, won gold medals in five events.
The Bronco girls’ relay teams have been a continuing presence at states since 1980, and this is the fourth consecutive year that three relays from Bronxville have competed at the championships.
Bronxville won two gold medals in Division 2. The 4x800m relay team, Natalie Weiner, Maeve Sullivan, Caroline Brashear, and Clio Dakolias, won gold in 9:15.35, their fastest time of the season by three seconds. The 4x400m team of Alisa Kanganis, Caroline Brashear, Sabrina Mellinghoff, and Balseiro placed first in a time of 3:57.35.
“Our 4x400 relay ran a very good time even with three of the athletes running their second or third event of the day,” said Coach David Ryan.
The 4x400m team on the podium at the state championships. Photo by David Ryan.
Two athletes ran in individual events. Eve Balseiro won gold in the Division 2 400m race and placed fifth in the Federation with a time of 57.06. Balseiro has been to states for four consecutive years and placed fourth in the 400m last year. Only a junior, she has broken eight school records in indoor and outdoor track. Sabrina Mellinghoff placed twelfth in the 200m.
Eve Balseiro on the podium at states. Photo by David Ryan.
The 4x100m relay team, Mellinghoff, Milly Koenig, Alisa Kanganis, and Balseiro, won a silver medal in 48.97. They broke the previous Bronxville School record of 49.28, which was set in 2017.
The Bronco girls picked up a bronze medal in the pole vault. Jules Gravier placed sixth in Division 2 with a 10-0 vault, once again tying the Bronxville school record. Milly Koenig competed in the long jump, placing fourteenth (16-1).
At the state championships, athletes win medals for Division 2 performances, but they also can win medals if they have top finishes in the Federation. The Federation includes results for public, private, and Catholic schools. The Bronxville girls brought home a total of nineteen medals.
The Bronxville boys medaled in three events, bringing home a total of twelve. Alex Rizzo was the Division 2 Champion in the 1600 and placed second overall in the Federation. His time, 4:12.36, was a season PR.
“He ran a very intelligent race from start to finish,” said Coach Ian Clark. “Even more impressive, he came back to run the 4x800 only two hours after he was done with the 1600.”
Rizzo, along with brother Matt, Jack Kochansky, and Tim McGrath, also won a Division 2 gold in the 4x800m relay in 7:45.67. Kochansky (1:59), McGrath (2:01), Alex Rizzo (1:53), and Matt Rizzo (1:50) set a new Division 2 State record.
“Bronxville’s 4x800 surprised a lot of people with their time at the Louck’s Games [7:54.73], but I knew that we had some time to cut,” said Coach Clark. “The boys stepped up and cut about nine seconds from their previous season best and finished second in the Federation standings.”
The Bronxville 4x800m relay team on the podium for the Federation meet. Photo contributed by Ian Clark.
Matt Rizzo ran the open 800m and finished second overall in the Federation meet, gaining the team eight points. His time of 1:52 was his second-best time of the year.
Seamus Watters capped a fantastic high school career and made the Division 2 finals for the 110 hurdles. He finished out his career as the best hurdler in Bronxville's history.
“There was simply no better way to end the meet and the season,” said Clark. “My guys have done nothing but spectacular things all season. I'm so proud to call them my athletes, and I'm so proud to be a part of the Bronco family.”
The Rizzo brothers with Coach Ian Clark. Photo contributed by Ian Clark.
Pictured at top (rotating): The boys’ 4x800m relay team, Division 2 Champions (photo by Jen McGrath); the girls’ 4x800m relay team, Division 2 Champions (photo by David Ryan).