Our Lady of Sorrows track team begins season

SOUTH ORANGE, NJ — The Our Lady of Sorrows track-and-field team opened its season at the Saint Cassian Invitational.

The small, inexperienced track team from OLS took to the field for the first time in two years, and, while the results may not have been all they had hoped, they were very promising. More than half the team had never seen a track before.

After a rough opening in the seventh- and eighth-grade 1600-meter races, Christopher Schmidt took advantage of a fluke and won the boys fifth- and sixth-grade race, while Anouk Lomuscio took second in the girls third- and fourth-grade race. The team saw increased success in the 800-meter, with newcomers Nora D’Andrea and Millie Williams scoring fourth and fifth in the girls seventh- and eighth-grade race, and Sean Navin taking second in the boys fifth- and sixth-grade race. Gianluca Ravano grabbed third in the boys third- and fourth-grade division. 

The sprints are where OLS shone, starting with the 400-meter. Isabel Sabnekar and Zoey Rooplal placed third and fifth in the girls seventh- and eighth-grade division before Navin blew out the field in winning the boys fifth and sixth. Sloane Donahue went out very fast and held on to take third in the third- and fourth-grade girls race. The second grade and under races were even more successful, as Izzie Williams took third in the girls race, and Caleb Dean and Alessandro Ravano teamed up to take first and third for the boys.

The surge continued in the 200-meter boys races, with seventh-grader Tai Gousse grabbing fifth, Xander Russo second in the fifth and sixth, and James Bautista-Turpin second in the third and fourth. The results of the boys 100-meter saw the same faces, with Russo winning the fifth and sixth and Bautista-Turpin the third and fourth races. These boys had never raced before.

OLS track and field is much more than running and the team proved it in the field events. In the TurboJav, Gousse and Joe Schmidt opened the seventh- and eighth-grade event with second and fourth. Donahue placed in the third and fourth girls event, while Alessandro Ravano and Dean placed second and third in the second-grade-and-under contest. Lomuscio was the surprise winner of the girls third and fourth shot put. The boys shot put saw Brendan McKeown take an equally surprising second in the seventh- and eighth-grade event, Lorenzo Tomasso take fifth in the fifth and sixth, and Anthony Destro and Griffin McShane placed third and fifth in the third- and fourth-grade event.

The relays completed the day. Sabnekar, Millie Williams, Nora D’Andrea and Maudie Grace placed fourth in a tight seventh- and eighth-grade girls race, while the team of Alfonso Dunmeyer, Tai Gousse, Joe Schmidt and McKeown took fourth for the boys. In the fifth- and sixth-grade boys race, Navin, Russo, Tomasso and Christopher Schmidt took gold, comfortably. Lomuscio, Izzie Williams, Donahue and Madison Noesner took third in the girls third- and fourth-grade medley, while Bautista-Turpin, Dean, McShane and Gianluca Ravano, finished fourth for the boys.

Not everyone scored, but Rafael Dunmeyer, Dahlila Henry, Sam Ardayfio, Robert and Caleb Lynch, Luca Destro, Carter Paul and Olivia Lie showed that better days are coming soon.

The team travels to Roselle Catholic High next week to compete in the 22nd annual Kids 4 Kids meet for the benefit of the Scholarship Fund for Inner-City Children.