Oosting, Krafian Multiple Victors At Div. 2 States


Ryan Oosting managed to make a pair of races, where he wasn't going all out, look spectacular at Saturday's Division 2 Championships at the Reggie Lewis Center.

The Arlington junior was only looking to come away with a controlled win in the mile at the meet before doubling in the two mile later.

Oosting was patient as he stayed back early on before taking command of the race with three laps left. The immensely talented junior, who clocked a 4:11.78 in last Saturday's New Balance Grand Prix meet, began his push from 800m out and clocked a scalding 2:04.3 for the final four laps for the 4:21.41 win.

"I was trying to save my energy a little bit for the two mile later," said a very fresh Oosting. "The last 400 was definitely a hundred percent. I've been working on my kick so I can finish fast at all states."

Oosting easily completed the double 90 minutes later when he cruised away from the pack and looked to be running almost effortlessly in winning the 2 mile by 31 seconds with a quick 9:13.41.

Somerville's Phillips Magre knew Ricky Francois's 34.72 record was well within reach and he never doubted the outcome as he sped to a new mark with his 34.62. Runnerup Angel Figueroa of Fitchburg was also under the old record with his 34.98.

"I knew I could potentially run faster than that so I just went out and went for it," said Magre. "It was good because I was close to my personal best (34.44) and still broke the meet record."

Anoush Krafian of Belmont had a big day as she captured three gold medals, leading off by demolishing the field in the 55 hurdles (8.49) and then leaping to victory in the long jump (17-6). She finished out the meet with a 5-4 win in the high jump.

Krafian, whose favorite event is the hurdles, emphasized that she needs to work on her starts, which she said were slow today on the infield. "I was really slow out of the blocks," she said. "The race was ok. It didn't feel great and wasn't fast. I felt really good today. My legs weren't heavy. I did hit a couple of hurdles."

With All-States slated for next Saturday, Krafian is focused on being more aggressive at the gun and getting out of the blocks faster than she ever has. She is confident in her ability to accelerate, but knows a quicker start will put the pressure on the rest of the field and not on herself.

"I need to work on getting to the first hurdle faster," Krafian said. "I'm almost always the last person to the first hurdle. I wind up playing catch up most of the race. I don't panic because I know my race and I know I can catch up. I know I'd be a lot better if I was ahead at the start."

Alexina Hurley of Woburn let Beverly's Ashley Foley set the pace in the 1000 before sprinting past her and into the lead with 250 meters left to disintegrate her personal best by five seconds with a very strong 2:55.08. The talented Foley was also well under three minutes with her second-place finish in 2:58.98.

With her goal for the season reached, Hurley is looking to lower her superb time even more. "I planned on just staying in the race and going when I felt ready," said Hurley. "It was nice to not be in the lead for a little bit and still feel I had a lot left in me."

And with Natick's Grace Connolly a mysterious scratch from the meet, Hurley was confident first place was well within reach. "I knew Grace was going to be the one I was running with," said Hurley. "I knew I had more of a chance. For most of the season my goal was to break three (minutes). I felt like I had a lot left. When I finished it felt like I had had skipped a lap."

Wellesley's Margaret Donahue had Sarah Reichheld of Concord-Carlisle in her back pocket for seven laps, but never gave up the lead once in dominating the mile wit her 5:02.28. Reichheld never faltered and was a strong second in 5:02.87.

"Coming into it I thought there would be someone in the (Connolly) to drag me out," said Donahue. "I was hoping to break five, but I saw she wasn't in the race. I had to take it out last week in our conference meet and I got a little boxed in. They began to throw elbows and I throwed them back. I was determined to get the lead from the start."

When Donahue sensed Reichheld was coming up on her with 2-1/2 laps left she knew she had to move hard. "There were races earlier this year when I was by myself where I pushed it to see how fast I could go," said Donahue.

Mansfield's athletes were on the victory podium all morning in the boys' competition and took the team win with 70 points to defend its title. The 4x400 lineup of Nick Horn, who broke the school record with his third-place finish in the 300 (35.51), Mike Shannon, Mike Hargrove and Kevin Crawford was victorious in 3:26.74. The 4x800 squad also picked up a win in 8:10.57 behind Jackson Murphy, Sean Lanzillo, Kalin Petrov and Patrick Heavey. Mike Shannon was second in the 600 with a 1:23.02 and Crawford picked up the silver medal with his 2:33.56 in the 1000. The Hornets picked up a pair of third-place finishes in the field events with personal-best efforts. Jerome DiLorenzo cracked the 21-foot barrier for the first time in the long jump (21-3/4) and Kevin McCree went over 50 feet in the shot put (50-1/2).

"It (defending) was a big goal at the start of the season," said head coach Julie Collins. "And like any winter, you run into your winter troubles. We looked so strong coming into this meet, but it's a state meet and anything can happen. We just brought our A game and watched what happened."

Wellesley's girls had Donahue's win in the mile (5:02.28) and Abby Comella's victory in the 600 (1:35.86) leading the way in the individual events. The 4x400 squad of Comella, Charlotte Fremiere, Johanna Kennedy and Anna Jordahl-Henry bolted to a meet-record time of 4:00.11 and the 4x800 lineup of Bridget Ulian, Loren Andrews, Donahue and Grace Ahonen clocked a for the win in 9:42.71. Like Mansfield, Wellesley also defended its title with 79 points.

Wellesley head coach John Griffith said it was just a matter of his team executing before the relays began.

"We knew if we were close coming into the relays we had a pretty good shot," said Griffith. "The girls really stepped up on the big stage and took care of it. We have some great individual talent and have a lot of depth on the team. When you have depth like that it's good for your relays.