Ken Nadeau had a blast at the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B indoor track championships last week.

“That was probably the most emotional and (most fun) meet I’ve been involved in in five years,” Nadeau said.

He had every right to enjoy it. The Winslow High School head coach watched his boys team edge Leavitt  102-98 to win the KVAC B title on Friday at Bowdoin College in Brunswick.

“We had a day like I haven’t seen since 2017,” Nadeau said. “It was just really remarkable how hard these kids worked. Every time I turned around, it looked like we were having individual successes, which compounds to the team goal of doing well.

On the girls side, the day belonged to Cony, which finished with 114 team points, 21 points ahead of runnerup Maine Central Institute (93).

“It was a tremendous meet,” Cony head coach Kevin Russell said. “Five years ago, we were just a club team. We’ve had three girls since the first year (as a varsity sport), Brianna Harriman, Grace Kirk and Zainaib (Albraihi). They’re seniors this year… They held out, they put the work in and it just paid off for them.”


Nadeau said he spends considerable time trying to play with the numbers for a big meet.

“As a coach, I’m kind of calculating the numbers as you go along and you’re sick to your stomach, you’re nervous for your kids. It was super special for those seniors, I have a big senior group of boys. They’ve watched our girls have a lot of success, year after year after year, especially at the KVAC level. Now they get the chance to get out there and do what they do and they were able to find a way to win.”

Evan Watts and Levi Olin led the Black Raiders in the dash events, with Watts picking up a win in the 55 meter (6.80), 200 (24.06) while finishing second in the 400 (56.16). It would be Olin who would pick up the victory in the 400 event (55.26).

“We knew if we were going to do well, we’d have to place up in the 55 and place up in the 200,” Nadeau said. “Evan Watts, man. Two personal bests in the 55. Both of those were sub-seven seconds… To take off 3/10s (of a second) in that race is really hard to do.”

Winslow also went on to win the 4×200 relay (1:40.02) with the team of Ryan Martin, Zackery St. Pierre, Ryan Yang and Joseph Richards. St. Pierre also finished third in both the long jump (20-07.00) and the triple-jump (40-04.25) while Brady Goodwin was fourth in the shot put (39-11.50).

Nadeau was also impressed with his girls team, which finished third (42 points) after graduating several key members last spring. Vanessa Norris, McKayla Fortin, Kaci Fortin and Allie Kimball led the Black Raiders to a victory in the 4×200 (1:59.83) relay.


“Our girls were seeded third, they ended up being third,” Nadeau said. “We graduated 100 points (from senior athletes) over the past five years. The numbers were not on our side on the girls side, but our girls still performed extremely well.”


The Cony girls won the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B indoor track title Friday at Bowdoin College in Brunswick. Photo submitted by Ken Nadeau


The Rams had several standouts. Kirk won the 400 (1:04.2) and 2-mile (12:56.38). Harriman won the 800 (2:31.61) and finished second in the triple jump (32-03.5). Kristen Kirk won the 55 hurdles (9.44) and was second in the high jump (5-02.00). Freshman Lorelli Grady won the mile (6:08.70).

Russell was particularly proud of Emma Brown, who won the 200 (28.08) and the long jump (15-04.25).

“She just killed those events and had massive (personal records) in those two events,” Russell said.

Cony also won the 4×800 relay (11:09.84) with the team of Albraihi, Grace Kirk, Brown and Grady.

Russell said the win is a good shot in the arm for the team heading into the Class B meet Monday in Gorham.

“(The KVAC title) gives us a tremendous amount of confidence,” Russell said.  “Looking at the state meet, it’s going to be pretty close. We could finish either first or third. I know (the seniors) want to win. They just want to cement their legacy and they want to leave something for the girls that are behind them that, ‘Hey, when you’re a senior, you can achieve this and help these young girls, give them a taste of victory.'”

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