Winslow’s Antoine Akoa lands during the long jump at the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Small/Medium School meet on May 27 in Augusta. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

The 2022 high school track and field season will go down as one to remember in central Maine.

The Winslow boys held off Orono to take home the Class C title on June 4 at Lewiston High School. It was the program’s third state title and first in Class C.

Winslow head coach Ken Nadeau said he knew his team had a good chance to win the title entering the meet.

“I could tell with their attitude that they were there to compete,” Nadeau said. “Seeing how it turned out on the other end was pretty exciting. It’s always fun to see things come to fruition after a long season of hard work.”

Senior Evan Watts won the 200-meter dash (23.31), while sophomore Joseph Richards won the 400 (51.88). Watts, Richards, Sam Schmitt and Ryan Yang comprised the victorious 4×400 relay (3:39.97) team. The Black Raiders also finished second in the 4×100 (45.92) and 4×800 (8:45.71).

“(The Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference championships) were a good set up to what we wanted to do (at states),” Nadeau said. “My two big things were to make sure that Evan Watts scored as much as he possibly could. To make sure that Joey (Richards) was able to score a double in the 400 and the 800. Everybody else either hit their seed (times) or improved slightly. I knew we’d have a chance to make it to the top. I had us as an eight point underdog on paper to Orono. We ended up winning by 11 1/2 points. That’s a big swing in a meet of that size.”


Winslow wasn’t the only central Maine team to shine at the Class C meet. Lisbon/Oak Hill ran away with its second consecutive girls title, led by Sarah Moore, who won the 100-meter dash (12.81) and the long jump (17-2). She also placed second in the triple jump.

The Maine Central Institute girls finished third, a strong wrap0up to a season that saw the Huskies win their first KVAC title of the 21st century. MCI picked up the Small School crown on May 27 at Cony High School in Augusta. Emma Burr — who won four events (100, 200, 100 hurdles and 300 hurdles) at the KVACs — won the 200 (26.49) at the Class C meet. She also finished second in the 100 and 100 hurdles.

Winslow’s Ryan Martin, left, and Mount View’s Joe Morse run in the 100-meter dash heat during the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Small/Medium School meet on May 27 in Augusta. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

Rose Jenkins led the Kents Hill girls to a fourth-place finish at the Class C meet, winning the 300 hurdles (47.42), the high jump (5-02), and was part of a title-winning 4×400 team (4:23.57), along with Naomi McGadney, Brie Lewis and Rosalie Klingler.

Cony made program history at the conference level when it swept the KVAC Medium School titles on May 27 at the Taylor Harmon Track in Augusta. It was the first conference sweep of recent memory for the Rams.

“It’s kind of hard to put into words,” Cony head coach Shawn Totman said. “I’m just so proud of these kids, how they performed in that championship meet.”

Bri Harriman won the 1,600 (5:50.05) and was part of a winning 4×800 team, along with Annabelle Orth, Grace Kirk and Loralie Grady. Kristen Kirk also won the high and triple jumps.


The Cony boys were led by junior Conor Morin, who won the long jump (20-07), high jump (5-10) and triple jump (39-11) titles.

This spring also proved to be the season of the racewalk, especially at Gardiner Area High School. Junior Ashlyn Poulin continued a breakout season, winning the Class B title in the event (7:49.33) by nearly a minute. It was the fastest time of any female in the event among the state championship meets.

Cony’s Kristen Kirk clears 5 feet, 2 inches to win the high jump at the Class B track and field state championship meet this season in Bar Harbor. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

“I’m extremely happy with the season that I had for sure,” said Poulin, who went on to finish third at the New Balance Nationals Outdoors June 16-19 in Franklin, Pennsylvania. “I did bury that (personal record) that I wanted to get. I’m super happy with the times. I was super surprised when I got down to the 7:31 (area).”

Poulin’s teammate, Jackson Boudreau, was also dominant in the racewalk, winning a Class B title (8:01.64).

Poulin said the pair kept a friendly rivalry going throughout the season to keep each other motivated.

“The rivalry we have between each other, especially last year, it was a really good motivation,” Poulin said. “We were able to push each other to get those better times.”

Carter Butterfield of Mt. Abram also won a state title in the racewalk, finishing first at the Class C meet (8:12.54).

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