Events: 1,500-meter run, 3,000 run, 5,000 run
Vital stats: It began to sound like a broken record; news of Bella Burda breaking yet another record. But such was the brilliant distance-running career of the Admirals’ superstar. She won six state championships overall and, between cross country and the indoor and outdoor track seasons, she set seven Dutchess County records. Burda captured her first outdoor 3,000-meter state and Federation titles this spring, finishing in 9:38.14, better than seven seconds ahead of the second-place finisher. The Villanova-bound standout holds county records in the 1,500 and 3,000, and won gold in the state meets in the fall, winter and spring this scholastic year.
Quotable: “When she first showed up as a freshman, I could see she had a lot of talent,” said Arlington coach Steve Arnett. “We would make a race plan and she would always be faster than I anticipated. She would improve week to week. That’s when I realized we had something special. She’s very quiet, a smart kid who plays the violin. But in the nicest possible way, Bella is a killer. She’s extremely competitive and has this tremendous focus and locks in. When she’s like that, there’s pretty much no stopping her. I’ve been coaching since 1973, and she’s the best pure distance runner I’ve ever been around.”
Event: Long jump
Vital stats: Joseph jumped a personal best 17-1 3/4 at the Section 9 Division 2 state qualifier, which was the best distance in Dutchess County. She took second in the Mid-Hudson Athletic League and the Section 9 Class C championships, and finished eighth in the Division 2 state meet. Joseph also was part of the winning 400 relay team in the MHAL championship.
Quotable: “Jen had an amazing year,” Dover coach Matt Pool said. “She added a whole foot to her long jump in one season. She’s a very focused, hard-working young lady and she displays a tremendous amount of leadership. Her focus is what makes her great and she’s going to continue to get better.”
School: New Paltz
Events: Pole vault
Vital stats: Kaplan literally soared above the competition. She won the MHAL and Section 9 Division 2 pole vault championships. She set a personal best, vaulting 11-0 to capture the Class B/C sectional title. In the state tournament, she matched her 11-0 vault to take the Division 2 title, 10th overall.
Quotable: “Samantha is very disciplined to get herself to the (Hudson Valley Flying Circus in Warwick) all during the year to work on her skills,” New Paltz coach Ann Gregory said. “We don’t offer indoor track, so it is difficult to compete and train consistently, but she took it upon herself to train and find her way to the indoor national meet. She’s also a strong leader who spends a great deal of time training our younger vaulters.”
School: John Jay
Events: Javelin, pole vault, long jump
Vital stats: Newman was the county champion in the javelin and pole vault and won the Section 1 javelin title with a toss of 109-11. She also won a league title in the long jump (15-10 1/2). She received first-team all-county honors in the javelin and took 25th in the event in the New Balance National Outdoors tournament.
Quotable: “DeAnna is probably the most all-around talented girl on our team,” John Jay coach Bob Lee said. “When you think of the best athletes you think of who can run the fastest, jump the furthest and highest and throw the farthest. DeAnna is capable of doing all those things very well.”
Events: 100 dash, 200 dash
Vital stats: Salazar emerged as an elite sprinter as the league champion in the 200 dash (26.74) and the county champion in the 100 dash (13.04). She also has a personal-best time of 12.94 in the 100 dash.
Quotable: “Naomi is one of the premiere sprinters in the area,” Arlington coach Brian Powers said. “She has bought into the principle that hard work breeds success. She has a fighter spirit and a great passion to compete. Her confidence has grown tremendously in the last year and she has great potential.”
School: Roy C. Ketcham
Events: senior: 100 hurdles
Vital stats: Scheck gradually improved and capped her senior season with a personal-best in the Section 1 state-qualifier meet. She ran the 100 hurdles in a 16.36 to finish in sixth place. She was the league champion in her event and earned first-team All-Northern County honors.
Quotable: “Riva has had an amazing four years representing Ketcham track and field,” Ketcham coach Dave Budd said. “She has worked so hard to improve every year since she was a freshman and it was no surprise that she saved her best performance for her last race. She’s a very special athlete and will be missed.”
School: Our Lady of Lourdes
Events: 800 run, 1,500 run
Vital stats: Timm had a superb freshman campaign, earning Journal All-Star honors in cross country and outdoor track and field. This spring, she won the 800 in the Section 1 Division 2 state qualifier (2:19.26) and also qualified in the 1,500, an event in which she set a program record with a 4:41.83.
Quotable: “Caroline is one of the smartest runners I have ever seen,” Lourdes coach John Herles said. “She has amazing self awareness and understands what she has to do to win a race. With her work ethic and intelligence as a freshman, the sky is the limit as to what she can accomplish.”
Events: 100 hurdles, 400 hurdles
Vital stats: Despite only running track for a year, Wood emerged as one of the top competitors in the county. She won the 400-meter hurdles at the MHAL championships (1:07.39) and took second in the Section 9 Class C championships. She also took first in the 100 high hurdles — with a personal best 16.77 — at the Section 9 championships, and was part of the winning 400 relay. Wood will play soccer at Iona College.
Quotable: “She’s outstanding and is the definition of a true athlete,” Pool said. “She’s a Division I soccer player and this was her first year doing track and field and she was able to become a great hurdler. It’s not an easy thing to pick up. We finished second in sectionals and we give a lot of credit to her.”
School: John Jay
Event: 100 dash, 200 dash, 400 dash, 400 relay and 1,600 relay
Vital stats: Young was the league champion in the 100 and 400 and county champ in the 200. She took second in the Section 1 state qualifier in the 400, finishing in 58.47 and, at the New York Relays, she set a school record in the 200, running in 25.85. She also is the anchor leg of John Jay’s sprint medley relay team. Young received all-county honors in each of her events.
Quotable: “Khiara already owns several of the John Jay records,” Lee said, “and by the end of her career, she’ll hold all of them. She is an amazing talent and she has already accomplished a lot. She’s a smooth runner and looks like she’s coasting.”
John Jay’s 1,600 relay
Athletes/grades: Alexandra Gusmano, 12; Samantha Mosca, 11; Erin Theiller, 10; Young, 10.
Vital stats: The relay team took third in the state qualifier where it ran its best time this season (4:02.59). The quartet was named first-team All-County.
Quotable: “The 1,600 relay was probably our most consistent group this season,” John Jay coach Christian Coscio said. “Anytime the four of them stepped on the track, they were a threat to do big things in the race. Losing our lead off leg, Allie (Gusmano), to graduation will hurt, but with three returning girls next year, I imagine the team will be just as competitive next year.”
Coach of the Year
Vital stats: Powers led a deep and dominant team that won county and league champions, and featured a slew of athletes who were in contention for titles in a variety of events.
Quotable: “It’s an honor and we have a very talented team that is receptive to the coaching staff,” Powers said. “I am proud of the girls for their success as well as the work they put in on a daily basis. Our team’s achievement wouldn’t be possible without coach Steve Arnett, Liz Viggiano and Michael Rubin.”
Arlington: Allie Coon, Amanda Fastiggi, Annie Geiger, Samantha Giangrasso, Angela Hidalgo, Meghan LaTuso, Kylie McFall, Sarah McGowan, Christiana Prater-Lee, Molly Sobolewski
Beacon: Jummie Akinwunmi, Paige Baisley
Dover: Kristin Butts, Lindsay Demers, Sydney Heidt, Irena Henry, Crystal Hughes, Kayla Moccio
John Jay: Alyssa DeMichael, Maureen Froehlich, Mercedes Junior, Megan Kohl, DeAnna Lomino, Epiphanie Reddick, Megan Sadowitz, Natalie Young
Millbrook: Rosario Sosa
New Paltz: Morgane Kuyl, Lauren Mullady
Pawling: Sarah Marvin
Poughkeepsie: Akeva Morrison
Our Lady of Lourdes: Katie Clarke, April Griggs, Grace McGrath, Eileen Shea, Meghan Slinskey
Roy C. Ketcham: Amani Arthur, Mikayla Cullen, Indira Kulkarn, Oreoluwa Odeniyi
Spackenkill: Isabel Cirilli