Sometimes all it takes is one performance to change the expectations for the season.
Aiden Felty had one of those goal-changing moments at Saturday's Winter Festival Small School meet at the Reggie Lewis Athletic Center. On his final attempt in the shot, the Innovation Academy junior heaved the metal ball to a big-time personal best of 55 feet, 5 inches. His effort was not only a more than four-foot improvement from his previous best but currently ranks him No. 3 nationally.
"I have thrown this far in practice, but taking it to a meet put me at a whole new level," said Felty, whose previous best in competition was 51-1.5 from last year's Division 5 Championship. "Right now I'm am definitely shooting for 60 (feet) because five feet isn't that much. I think I can chug one and do it."
Newburyport's Sam Acquaviva claimed the boys' mile with a winning time of 4:31.1. Acquaviva ran even splits, hitting his opening 800m at 2:15.
The recent Division 2 state cross-country champion broke away from the lead pack with about 500 meters remaining and never looked back. His final surge did come somewhat by accident.
"I thought there was a lap and a half left when there was really two and a half laps left," he said. "I went then and just tried to hang on when I realized there was another lap left."
Lynnfield's Kate Mitchell, a 2:12 half-miler, easily won the girls' 1,000m. Mitchell coasted to a first-place time of 3:03, two seconds ahead of her closest rival.
"Today, it's early in the season so I just wanted to get a race under my belt," she said. "I didn't have a certain time goal or place goal. I just wanted to have a good race, feel good and work on my form.
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