NEW HAVEN — One by one, area chances for a gold medal were going by the boards Saturday in the CIAC indoor track class championships at the Floyd Little Athletic Center.
Yes, Sheehan had collected five medals and re-set two school relay records during the day in Class M.
And, yes, Lyman Hall junior standout Michael Toppin had taken two silvers in the long jump and 300 meters in the same meet.
But no one from the R-J coverage area had risen to the top step of the podium — not until Southington junior Trinity Cardillo stepped into the shot put circle in Saturday night’s Class LL meet.
Picking up where checkered Southington predecessor Amanda Howe left off a year ago, Cardillo captured the shot put handily with a throw of 39 feet, 6½ inches. Nearly three feet separated Cardillo from the rest of the field.
In fact, Cardillo would have won with virtually any of her six attempts. Only one of them was shorter than the 36-7¼ thrown by runner-up Katherine George of Hall.
The Lady Knights also got a second-place performance Saturday night from junior higher jumper Sydney Garrison, who was part of a three-way tie at 5 feet, 2 inches behind Class LL record-holder Allyson Lewis of NFA (5-6).
Southington senior Casey Selinske was third in the pole vault at 12-6. Fellow seniors Ryan Slesinski and Kate Kemnitz mounted third-place performances in their specialty events — Slesinski in the 600 meters (1:25.51) and Kemnitz in the 1,000 (3:10.29).
Slesinski also anchored the third-place 1,600 sprint medley and third-place 4x400 relays, both behind junior John Carreiro and seniors Trevor Porter and Joe Verderame. The quartet ran a 3:44.58 in the sprint medley and a 3:33.27 in the 4x400.
In Class M, the day was dominated by Hillhouse, which captured both the boys and girls team titles. Yet the Wallingford schools both made their mark.
For Sheehan, the two record-breaking performances came in the girls’ 4x200 and 4x400 relays and resulted in bronze medals.
Senior Julia Mansfield ran anchor on both behind freshman Avery Winters and sophomore Clarisse Aminawung.
The trio was joined by freshman Amanda Castaldi on the 4x200 (1:48.79) and by junior Olivia Dubuc on the 4x400 (4:13.55).
In individual events, Sheehan senior Kyra Connolly finished second in the pole vault at 9 feet, while Dubuc and senior Cyle Martindale brought home bronze for the Titans. Dubuc was third in the 600 meters in 1:40.23 and Martindale was third in the shot put at 46 feet, 3½ inches.
Both improved on their seeds. Dubuc’s previous best was 1:41.53. Martindale’s was 44-8¼.
That Sheehan’s relay girls lowered their bar was hardly surprising. The 4x200 group has re-set its own school record for three meets running, starting with a 1:51.28 at the SCC East Sectional and a 1:49.54 at the SCC conference meet prior to Saturday’s 1:48.79.
The 4x400 group has done the deed in two straight meets, following its 4:15.30 at the SCC meet with Saturday’s 4:13.55.
Two of the relay members, Winters and Mansfield, later went 4-5 in the 300 meters. Winters crossed in 43.26 and Mansfield in 43.52.
As for Toppin, he finished second behind SCC rivals Neal Eley and Deshaune Poole of Hillhouse, respectively, in the long jump and 300. Toppin landed a 20-10 ¼ in the long jump and ran a 35.77 in the 300.
Sheehan junior Riley Bjornberg was seventh in the 300 at 37.82. The long jump featured two other area athletes in the top 10. Sheehan junior Max Luddy placed sixth (19-8½) and Platt senior Frederick D’Aniello was eighth (19-2½).
D’Aniello was also 11th in the 300 (38.54) and part of the Platt 4x200 relay team that lowered its previous best time from 1:42.43 to 1:40.57 in finishing 12th. D’Aniello teamed with junior Cameron Fox and seniors Chase Bessler and Tyler Johnson.
Also in Class M:
Sheehan sophomore Lizzie Brown ran a 3:14.65 to place sixth in the 1,000 meters and ran anchor on the sixth-place 1,600 sprint medley (4:39.11) behind freshman Patrice Mansfield and sophomores Allison Villano and Clarisse Aminawung.
Sheehan freshman Erin Brennan, the SCC pole vault champ, improved her height to 8 feet and placed sixth.
The girls high jump featured a new Class M record by Berlin senior Patricia Mroczkowski, who cleared 5-6 ¼. The former mark of 5-6, held by Janel Kozolowski of Woodstock, had stood since 2000. Sheehan’s Connolly was seventh in 4-10.
Toppin capped his day anchoring Lyman Hall’s fifth-place 4x400 team behind seniors Andrew Horobin, Luke Horobin and Jake Ranney (3:34.81).