The Waterville Senior High School indoor track and field teams competed in their first meet of the season Saturday, the Bowdoin College Relays. The Purple Panthers had more than 60 athletes compete, and had more than 70 come out for the team this winter.

“Far and away, it’s the biggest team we’ve had,” coach Ian Wilson said.

Both the Waterville girls and boys won the meet. The boys scored 111 points, well in front of second-place Mt. Ararat (82). The girls won with a score of 116, to Greely’s 92.

“There’s a friendly little rivalry to see who can get the better score,” Wilson said. “It’s in good fun.”

Now that the first meet of the season is out of the way, the Panthers will work on improving the team’s overall personal record rate. Improving personal bests is something everyone on the team can take part in, Wilson said, and keeps the entire team focused on the goal of overall team improvement.

“We tell the kids, if we have a 50 percent P.R. rate for every meet during the season, we’ll be very tough to beat.”

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Erskine also competed at Saturday’s Bowdoin Relays. Sophomore Jade Canak took third place in the girls triple jump with a leap of 32 feet, 1 inch. Freshman Courtney Elliot tied for fourth in the pole vault, with a vault of 6-6.

Junior Allison Gavin placed sixth in the shot put for the Eagles, with a throw of 25 feet.

For the Erskine boys, senior Sean Cabanis placed fourth in the long jump (17-7.25) and fourth in the high jump (5-4). Junior Tyler Adams was fourth in the triple jump (37-6), Thomas Ferguson took second in the pole vault (10-feet) for the Eagles.

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A number of area teams will compete for the first time on Friday, when they travel to Brunswick for a meet at Bowdoin. For many athletes, it will be their first time on a track this season, after practicing by running in the halls at school.

“We’re able to go to Colby on Wednesdays, so we get on a track a little,” said Lawrence coach Tim Alberts, who will take his team to Bowdoin on Friday.

Most of the time, however, teams practice by running through the hallways, and that’s not the best surface.

“We’re doing a lot of stride work. The (hall) floor is just so hard on the legs. Obviously, you can’t get the quality workout you can get at Colby.”

Practicing in the school also offers no simulation of real competition, and the athletes notice that.

“I had one kid say to me, ‘Coach, I don’t feel like I’m going that fast,'” Alberts said. “I said, ‘Well, you don’t have that adrenaline yet.’ It’s different when you’re in a lane next to somebody from another school.”

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

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