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Track and field: Indian River captures fourth straight FL boys crown


Darrius Bryant is hoping for a day off from practice today.

After all, he and his teammates helped Indian River capture its fourth consecutive Frontier League track and field championship on Wednesday at Watertown High School.

Plus, it is the Warriors’ third undefeated season.

“It feels good,” Bryant said. “Our team is just a big ol’ family. We joke around a lot, but we work hard.”

Indian River finished with 150 points, while South Jefferson scored 83 points to claim second place.

Beaver River (79 points) and Carthage (68) were third and fourth, respectively, out of eight schools.

Bryant won the long jump, leaping 22 feet, 2 inches, to earn a berth at the Section 3 state qualifier. He also claimed the triple jump and took first place in the 100-meter dash.

Indian River racked up 30 points by capturing every relay, including both non-scoring relays, the 1,600 sprint medley and 400 throwers relay.

“We have never done that before,” Indian River coach Duane Dusharm said.

“That just means you’re pretty deep,” he added. “It means you’ve got a pretty well-balanced team.”

The 3,200 relay is an event that usually eludes Indian River.

South Jefferson and Beaver River typically have a claim on the distance relays. But the Warriors beat the Spartans in that event earlier in the season.

“At first I was surprised,” Indian River junior Felix Garcia said. “They’re like the best at (distance races). When we won a couple of meets ago I was overjoyed. At that moment I was more proud of my team than I ever was. And now winning again, I’m equally as proud as I was. It feels good to win.”

Members of the throwers relay won a large Little Caesars pizza, which was enjoyed immediately following the completion of the meet.

Garcia took the 400 hurdles and ran on the first-place 1,600 and 3,200 relays, while Tyler Wright won the discus for the Warriors.

Peter Kilcer took second place in the shot put.

“Indian River is the real deal,” South Jefferson coach John Arcaro said.

“They have at least two good kids in every event,” he added. “The only thing they’re weak in is the 3,200-meter run.”

Nick Tyler of South Jefferson won the 3,200 and 1,600, while teammate Alex Rogers claimed the shot put.

Cody Updike was first in the 110 hurdles and second in the 400 hurdles for Beaver River, and Noah LoConte took the 800 for Carthage.

Matthew Olney of Watertown won the high jump, despite a sore knee, and placed second in both the long jump and triple jump. Jhon Delius added a victory in the 400 for the Cyclones.

Sam Benzing of South Lewis won the pole vault after a tie-breaker with Andrew Pfiel of South Jefferson. Both cleared 11 feet.

Joe Carusone raced to victory in the 200 and finished second in the 100 for Altmar-Parish-Williamstown.

Bryant, in his senior season, missed two meets this season due to a right hamstring injury, which affected his progress.

“At first I was worried but then the trainer at the school took care of it and really helped out,” Bryant said.

He came back to competition gradually, to avoid re-injury.

“We just want him healthy,” Dusharm said. “He’s a pretty big cog.”

Bryant missed most of last season after pulling the same hamstring. He recovered to compete at the league championship meet and did well in sectionals.

Shelton Williams took second in the high jump and the 400 and contributed to a pair of winning relays for Indian River.

Jakese Crockett and Austin Millisor each ran on two first-place relays for the Warriors.

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