We’re ready for another exciting indoor track & field season. To get you pumped up for the winter campaign, Bay State Running will preview some of the top athletes that we expect will make an impact over the next few months.
When the Meet of Champions roll around on Feb. 24, be prepared for a plethora of new faces occupying that No. 1 spot on the podium. At last year’s meet, seniors were prevalent in the winners’ circle. Only one returning champion is coming back this season on the boys’ side and two for the girls. But overall, as always, the talent is through the roof this year. We believe several of our Bay Staters will not only prosper at the state level, but regionally and nationally, too.
Here we begin our previews with the boy’ throwing and jumping events.
Seniors dominated this event at last year’s Meet of Champions with seven athletes occupying the eight spots on the podium. The lone non-senior, Peabody’s Alex Jackson, gets the favorite label here. As a sophimore last winter, Jackson finished fourth at the championship meet. He had an indoor best of 54 feet, 4.75 inches at the Division 4 Championships, an event he won by nearly seven feet. During the outdoor season, Jackson unleashed an all-time best of 58-6 at the Jim Hoar Freshmen-Sophomore Invitational and was third at the MOC. The Peabody standout’s strongest contenders are three other throwers that exceeded 50 feet during the indoor and/or outdoor seasons last year with Amesbury’s Aiden Donovan, Amherst Pelham’s Logan Alfandari and Central Catholic’s Thomas Galusha. Donovan went 50-7 to take runner-up honors at the Div. 5 meet and was fourth at the MOC in the spring. He had an all-time bets of 53-3.5 at the Sheldon Invitational in mid May. After coming close during the winter campaign, Alfandari exceeded 50 feet four times in the spring with a best of 52-2.75. Galusha had a 50-4.5 best at the Andover Invite on May 13 and was consistently in the high 40-foot range
Camren Allain gets the favorite nod in this event. The Carver senior was the runner-up at the indoor and outdoor MOC last year, both times clearing 6-4. He had his all-time best of 6-7.25 at the New Balance Nationals in the winter and an outdoor PR of 6-6.25 at NBN in June. In other words, Allain performs at his best when it comes championship time. Andover’s Harvey Lys is a coming off a very-successful and consistent outdoor season where he leaped higher thah 6-2 at 10 meets, including a PR of 6-5.5 at the USATF New England Junior Olympics Championships. Saint John’s Antonio Waife (6-4 best) and Holliston’s Kaua Lima (6-4) are other potential contenders. Lima, a senior, competed in his first season of track last spring.
During last year’s indoor season, Wiafe was tenth overall at the Meet of Champions. Based on what he did once the spring rolled around, we’re expecting that to change significantly this winter. On the outdoor surface in 2023, the Saint John’s senior exceeded 22 feet five times and twice went over the 23-foot mark, capped by an all-time best of 23-9.75 at the New Balance Nationals Outdoor Championships in mid June where he earned All-American honors by placing sixth overall. Wiafe leads a talented group of leapers that features four others that went further than 22 feet last winter – Stoughton’s Alex Huynh (21-8), Brookline’s Max Tringas (21-5.5), Central Catholic’s Suuna Kalemera (21-5) and Silver Lake’s Damian DeKarski (21-1).