One city league track and field meet championship is notable, something to take pride in.
Since the School of the Arts girls team made it two in as many years Friday afternoon, that is another strong signal there is a new team in place for others to chase in the Rochester City Athletic Conference.
School of the Arts was a comfortable winner in the girls team standings at the RCAC Championships at Franklin, as it scored 182 points. Runner-up Edison finished with 117. No team in the league has defeated the School of the Arts girls during a regular season meet in three seasons.
“It’s was nice getting recognition,” SOTA senior sprinter Briyanna Brinkley said. “People tend to doubt School of the Arts, we’re not an athletically-based school.
“It was nice to proving everyone wrong.”
Brinkley won the girls 400-meter city meet race in 1:00.67 and finished second in the 100 dash (12.69).
School of the Arts sophomore Veronica Mariano finished first in the 1,500 and 800. Sophomore teammate Rachel Rapoza won the 2,000 steeplechase and 3,000 to help School of the Arts pull away from Edison, despite freshman Imani Obieke’s wins in the 100 (12.65) and long jump (16 feet-9 inches) as well as first-place finishes by senior Dayonna Holmes in the 400 hurdles and 200 dash.
“We’re like a family,” Brinkley said. “We’re always pushing each other to be the best.
“It’s a lot to keep up with, filling last year’s shoes and the ones from the other years. Yeah, it’s worth it. I love track.”
This was also the final city league meet for Edison senior Kaishaun Cathey, who won the boys triple jump (46-4) and just finished second in the 200. Cathey, who is on top of the Section V boys triple jump leaderboard, also earned fourth-place points in the 100 dash to lead the Inventors to the city league meet boys team title.
“I used to to do that last year, worry about technique,” Cathey said. “When you triple jump and try to get the first stage right, the second stage, all that technique is something you already know from practice.
“All you need, when it comes down to it, is to worry about powering forward.”
McQuaid senior A.J. Stuver tripped over the water barrier at Franklin during the boys 3,000 steeplechase, but got back on his feet and challenged his school’s record, as he won the event for the second consecutive season.
Stuver crossed the finish line after 10:03.90, which puts him fourth on the Section V leaderboard, before the Monroe County Championships Saturday at Hilton.
Stuver ran the race last week at Batavia, where his time was 10:11.39. Rush-Henrietta’s Brennan Root and Hilton’s Tyler Ranke have run this race in under 9:36.00 this season.
“I felt pretty prepared,” Stuver said. “I’ve only run this one other time, and it was a cold windy day.
“If I had the weather, I knew I could do something big. I try not to look at (the Section V leaderboard) religiously, because I believe that on any given day, anyone can beat anyone.”