The snow and cold temperatures may put a damper on outdoor activities at Maine high schools, but there is plenty of activity going on inside once the final bell rings.
That’s because the indoor track and field season has begun across the state.
Things got under way last weekend with two Eastern Maine Indoor Track League exhibition meets in Orono and the Bowdoin Relays at Bowdoin College in Brunswick.
At UMaine, athletes were limited to two events and there was no team scoring.
Among the girls, Grace MacLean of Bangor wasted no time asserting herself in the “A” meet that also included Ellsworth, Central of Corinth, Hermon, John Bapst, Orono and Sumner of East Sullivan.
The senior tied the league record with a leap of 17 feet, 5 inches in the long jump, then claimed the high jump at 5-2.
John Bapst senior Adrienne Carmack also got off to a strong start, winning the mile in 5 minutes, 44.9 seconds, and taking the two-mile in 12:48.80.
In the girls “B” meet, which included Brewer, Hampden, Old Town, Mount Desert Island, Foxcroft Academy, Bucksport, Mattanawcook Academy of Lincoln, Tia Jackson of Old Town was a two-event winner on the girls side.
The junior sped to first place in the 55 hurdles (7.71 seconds) and in the high jump (5 feet even).
Nora Hubbell of Mount Desert Island also claimed two victories, taking the 800 (2:30.65) and the two-mile (12:20.64). The Trojans also had strong outings from a couple of newcomers.
In the 400, MDI freshmen Kayla Ray (1:06.79) and Emma Fernald (1:08.00) took first and second, respectively. Fernald also won the long jump (14-1), while Ray placed fifth in the 200.
In the boys “B” meet, Nicholas Boutin of Old Town, Brewer’s Jeremy Bissell and Hampden Academy’s Sam Donnelly and Roy Donnelly were among the top performers.
Boutin ran to a win in the 400 at 54.09 and placed second in the 55. Sam Donnelly clocked a 24.42 to take the 200 and was third in the 55, while Roy Donnelly won the 55 (6.92) and was third in the 200.
Bissell soared 19-8 to win the long jump and wound up second in the 400.
The boys “A” meet was the scene of some good performances by athletes from Sumner, Central and Orono.
Senior Christian Duncan set the tone for Central by winning the long jump (18-4.25) and the high jump (5-8). Teammates Jared St. Peter (55 hurdles, 8.67) and Adam Oko (800, 2:12.51) also won events.
Baramee Janla of Sumner won the 55 and placed second in the 200 behind teammate Kyle Jordan (24.72).
Orono was paced by Tyler White, who won the mile (4:42.10) and anchored the victorious 4-by-220 relay. David Frederick captured the pole vault (11-6) and also ran on the relay along with Jamie Norman and Brandon Crocker.
At the Bowdoin College Relays in Brunswick, the Waterville High girls earned a seven-point win (101-94) over Greely of Cumberland Center.
The Purple Panthers were led by senior distance standout Bethanie Brown, who won the mile in a meet-record time of 4:59.68.
Brown, who has committed to continue her career at the University of Connecticut next year, also ran on three first-place relays: the 3-by-1-mile (16:58.11), the 1,200 sprint (3:02.59) and the 4-by-400 (4:24.96).
Lydia Roy, Georgia Bolduc and Sarah Shoulta ran the 1,200 sprint relay, while Roy, Shoulta and Kellie Bolduc joined Brown in the 4-by-400 relay. Roy, Georgia Bolduc, Shoulta and Kellie Bolduc also took the 4-by-200 relay (1:53.71).
Devin Burgess, Troy Gurski, was among the catalysts for the Waterville boys, who won the 1,200 sprint medley (2:38.82), the 3-by-55 shuttle hurdles (24.2) and the 4-by-55 shuttle hurdles (33.0), along with several other events.
Maine athletes choose colleges
Derek Veilleux of the Maine TrackXC website recently has revealed the college plans of a handful of Maine track and field standouts.
While Brown’s decision to attend Division I Connecticut was a significant development, others have also made their choices.
Veilleux reports Silas Eastman of Fryeburg Academy and Nate Madeira of Greely High in Cumberland Center will become teammates at Division III Colby College in Waterville next fall.
Eastman was the Class B state runner-up in cross country last fall and went on to finish third at the New Englands. He also was the Class B outdoor state champion in the 3,200 last spring.
Madeira was the fourth-place finisher at the Class B cross-country state title meet earlier this fall and logged top-nine finishes in the 1,600 and 3,200 at the Class B outdoor state meet in 2012.
Erzsebet Nagy of Lawrence High in Fairfield, who was the Class A cross-country individual winner and was first in the 800 and second in the 1,600 outdoors, has chosen Division III Middlebury College.
Nagy also placed sixth in the 800 at the New Englands last June.
Tiana Thomas of Waterville, who was 13th in the Class B cross-country state meet and posted two top-20 efforts in the 3,200 and 1,600 outdoors, will attend Division III University of New England in Biddeford.