Top Events To Watch At South Shore Twilight Invitational

It’s mid May, and the divisional state meets and Meet of Champions are literally just around the corner. With that being said, you know the competition will be heated at Saturday’s South Shore Twilight Invitational at Norwell High. Well, we looked at the entry list and, yes indeed, we could have some top-level performances on the Clippers’ home turf this weekend.

Here’s what we consider the top events to watch at South Shore.

Boys’ Two Mile

With no disrespect to the other entries in this race, this will essentially be a solo effort, a time trial, for top seed Paul Bergeron of Westford Academy. The multiple all-stater has a seed time of 8:51.88 from last year’s Division 1 Championships, a time that’s nearly a minute ahead of his closest rival. His entry in this race leads us to believe one thing. That is, unlike the indoor season, he will be competing in the upcoming championship meets as this is one of the last qualifiers, other than the Mercury Games in Norton, which is also held on Saturday. We do think that the Stanford-bound senior will be focused on a fast time, not just to secure a spot in the seeded section of the championship meets, but also a qualifier for the upcoming nationals. The standards for New Balance Nationals in mid June is 9:16, which Bergeron should do with ease. Will he be looking to go sub-9 this weekend? Just by the two races he’s run this spring, it does seem he’s capable of it. Two weeks ago, in his first first race of the outdoor season, Bergeron was fourth overall at the BSR Elite Scholastic Mile with a best of 4:09.78. This past weekend, he ran away from the field at the Andover Boosters Invitational with a solid 4:15.78. We should know early if Bergeron will be attempting to become our second runner under nine minutes this season. Right now, that distinction belongs to Nashoba’s Alan Balewicz, who clocked 8:59.79 at the Weston Twilight Invitational a couple of weeks ago.

Boys’ Mile

Here’s another race where we feel a Westford Academy runner will be the first to break the tape. The top seed is WA junior Jack Graffeo. His seed is listed at 4:19.66, but Graffeo has run much faster this season. He was seventh in the BSR Elite Scholastic Mile with a PR of 4:10.20. Because the BSR race was not sanctioned by the MIAA, Graffeo will be looking for a time that he knows will get him into the seeded section of the mile at the championship meets. We expect his race will be similar to his teammate’s with no one within striking distance in the late stages of the race. At the very least, we feel Graffeo will be in that 4:15 range. The No. 2 seed is Somerville’s Attikos Kaye with a seed of 4:25.62.

Girls’ 200m, 400m

These two races feature Breanna Braham of Dennis Yarmouth, who has been unbeaten in the few races that she competed in this season. Braham was a bronze medalist in the 300m at the Meet of Champions this past winter and has PRs of 24.87 and 57.33 in the 200m and 400m, respectively. In both races, the D-Y senior will be matched up with Whitinsville Christian’s Avery Glidden, who has solid times of 26.07 and 58.14.

Boys’ 200m

Not a typo. This event has 209 entries. Yes, if you figure in potential scratches, this event could have between 20-25 heats alone. Of those entries, five have gone faster than 22.5 for the half-lapper. We should have a fast one here. The No. 1 seed is Bridgewater Raynham’s Kauan Bento with a time of 21.98, which he did in his preliminary heat of last year’s MOC, a meet he finished sixth overall. Joining Bento is Brockton’s Lucas Andrade (22.14), Worcester Tech’s Michael Gyimah (22.19), Norwell’s Noah Mulligan (22.35) and Worcester Tech’s Cyprian Ojatabu (22.50), to name a few.

Girls’ Long & Triple jump

Norwell’s Lilliana MacDonald should feel right at home this weekend. The Clipper senior is the clear-cut favorite to win both of her events at South Shore where she is the top seed. MacDonald has a state No. 4 of 38 feet, 0.25 inches in the triple and is ranked sixth in the long jump at 18-7.25. In the triple, her best is nearly three feet further than the two seed.

Girls’ 800m

This has been an event that, like several others, has really gotten competitive over the years with a multitude of runners under 2:20. On Saturday, we’ll have three of them looking to improve on their bests with season reaching crunch time. Wellesley’s Emma Tuxbury is the top seed with a best of 2:16.55. Weymouth teammates Gracie Richard (2:17.98) and Isabella Galusha (2:18.23) are not too far behind. Look for a time in the 2:15 range with this trio.

Boys’ 400m hurdles

This is a race that is certainly shaping up to be one of the can’t-miss events of the Meet of Champions with four runners already under 55 seconds. One of the quartet will be at South Shore on Saturday with Westford Academy’s Ryan Kyle on the line. The WA junior is ranked No. 3 in the state with his best of 54.74 from his win at the Twilight Invitational. The top time in the state is 54.18 by Lexington’s McKenna O’Hare. We sure getting a time under that mark is one of the goals of Kyle when he answers the gun. At the two seed is Brockton’s Jarred Mighty, who has a best of 55.20.

Boys’ High Jump

During the indoor season, Camren Allain was one of our state’s top leapers. The Carver senior won the Division 5 title by soaring to a PR and state-leading 6-8. He was also third at the MOC. We haven’t heard much about Allain this outdoor season. Will he make some noise this weekend? Currently, the top height this spring is 6-5.25 by Shrewsbury’s Derek Shrimer. If he’s at his best, Allain could be our new leader.

Share Your Thoughts