NORTH CALDWELL – The Mount St. Dominic track team had a successful day at the West Essex Relays, held on Saturday, April 22, at West Essex High School.

The team earned 60 medals on the varsity and JV levels.

“We had great performances at the West Essex Relays this past weekend,” said head coach Rich O’Connor. “We won medals in the 4×100, 4×200, 4×400, distance medley, sprint medley, high jump, long jump, javelin, and shot put.”

The varsity 4×100 relay team of juniors Carissa Dorval, Holly Ruvo, Makenzi Patterson, and Kaylin Ranges took first place in 51.92.

The varsity distance medley relay team of junior Maddie Huelbig, senior Lyara Antoine, senior Melissa Julian, and junior Katie Onello ran a season-best 13:32 to take second place. That time is currently first in Essex County.

“We had so many underclassmen win multiple medals on the day,” O’Connor said. “Julia Acevedo, a freshman, won four medals on the day in the long jump, 4×100, 4×200, and the sprint medley relay.”

Four freshmen, Nicole Kahn, Acevedo, Alyssa Mastando, and Anya Michalewski, ran a season-best 56.13 to take second place in the JV 4×100 relay.

The JV distance medley relay team of freshman Aly Greenberg, freshman Gianna Delotto, freshman Alyssa Mielnicki, and sophomore Bridget Murphy took fourth place.

“One of the best parts about the beginning of this season is how much experience our underclassmen are gaining at meets,” O’Connor said. “They train and race with an incredible amount of maturity and confidence, and it has been awesome to see. We have made an effort to get our young athletes as many opportunities to race at weekend invitationals, and they have blown us away with their performances.”

While the underclassmen have been impressive, the upperclassman have also been performing well.

“We’ve also had so many upperclassmen step up early this season with outstanding performances,” O’Connor said. “Seniors Jackie Smith and Cat O’Brien are very close to breaking the school record and the 100 foot mark [in the javelin]. They have looked awesome during the early part of the season, and both could end up breaking the record.”

O’Connor added that Smith just started throwing the javelin this spring. She recently committed to Mary Washington University for field hockey and javelin.

Overall, O’Connor is pleased with how the season is going so far and how his athletes are performing.

“The present and future of our program look bright,” he said.

Team members will next compete in the Penn Relays, which will be held from Thursday, April 27, through Saturday, April 29, in Philadelphia.

“We have athletes competing in the 4×100 and 4×400,” O’Connor said. “They are very excited to compete there. Penn Relays is one of the most famous track meets in the world and an unforgettable experience.”

Read the article in The Progress.