SCH Invitational – At the beginning of the third leg of the 4 x 200 meter relay, runners break for the inside lane. (Photo by Tom Utescher)

by Tom Utescher

At the 2013 edition of the annual Springside Chestnut Hill Academy Track Invitational, the Blue Devils hosted most of their Inter-Ac League peers and a collection of other small school squads last Saturday. There was bright sunshine along with gradually warming temperatures throughout the event, which traces it origins back to the old Chestnut Hill Academy Relays.

There are now some field events and two open footraces on the program, but relay races are still at the heart of the gathering.

As expected, the Inter-Ac schools (all attended except Malvern Prep) excelled in the 4 x 400 meter contest, which is still the only relay race run in official league meets.

Penn Charter, which claimed a total of 10 gold, silver, and bronze medals on Saturday, won the four-by-four out of what was supposed to be the slower of the two heats. The Quakers finished in three minutes, 30.7 seconds with the foursome of James Biggs-Frazier, Charlie Hoyt, Tre Williams, and Daryl Worley, and coming in second overall out of the same heat was Haverford School. Third place overall went to Germantown Academy (Nelson Floyd, Earl Edwards, Sam Ritz, and Andrew Simon) and right behind the Patriots in the second heat were the host Blue Devils of SCH (Mac Concannon, Phil Giovinazzo, Graham Allen, Jamil Poole).

SCH earned a bronze medal in the sprint medley relay, in which the four legs are (in order) 400, 200, 200, and 800 meters. Here, the Devils sent out Poole, Concannon, Jordan Johnson, and Allen. Haverford won this one in 3:36.6, with second place going to Charter (Williams, Biggs-Frazier, Worley, Hoyt). Springside Chestnut Hill also had Johnson, a freshman, finish second in the 100-meter dash, which was won by Khiry Twyman of Girard College in 11.1 seconds. Tying for third place were another runner from Girard and Jhaloni Johnson of Springfield High School.

The Springfield Spartans were a force in the sprint relays, winning both the 4 x 100 and 4 x 200. In the shorter race, a time of 44.3 seconds gained the gold for Kyree Carmichael, Khalil Hopkins-Bey, Kyle Wyche, and Johnson, and in the 4 x 200 winning quartet (1:32.4) was almost identical, except that Max Barnes was the runner on the third leg instead of Wyche.

Girard was second in the 4 x 100, and GA was third with Simon, Devon Goodman, Floyd, and Edwards, while in the 4 x 200 Girard was runner-up once more and Penn Charter claimed the bronze medals thanks to Biggs-Frazier, Judah Jamison, Julian Johnson, and Worley.

Springfield was second in the 4 x 800, where the winner was Julia R. Masterman School (8:18.9) with its foursome of Robert McGarry, Kai Heen, Julian Roessler, and Julian Degroit-Lutzner. PC was in third with Etienne Dumas, Hans Stedman, Matt Sullivan, and Ed McLaughlin.

Masterman’s McGarry was the individual victor in the open 1600, crossing the line in 4:39.5 ahead of two Penn Charter runners, David Koch and Scott Mason.

The distance medley relay featured legs of 1200, 400, 800, and 1600 meters. Taking the lead in the final lap, Episcopal Academy won it in 11:23.2, courtesy of Ryan Quinlan, Tim Pope, Michael Quinlan, and Steven Lucey. In second was GA (Ben Ritz, Matt Miller, Dan Chen, Sam Ritz), with Masterman third.

Four field events were included in the meet, and these yielded a total of four medals for the PC Quakers. Notre Dame football signee Mike McGlinchey’s toss of 48’11.25” won the shot put, and his teammate Naazhim Suluki-Johnson was runner-up ahead of a Haverford thrower. Silver medals were won by Charter’s Abdul-Kareem Muhammad in the high jump, and by Ryan Burnett in the triple jump.

Springfield’s Chris Stone won the high jump by clearing the bar at 6’4”, and he took third in the long jump, as well. Girard’s Twyman, a senior who had already won the 100-meter dash, also struck gold in the long jump as he traveled 22’1.5”, breaking a meet record that had been established in 2007 by Phil Thomas, of the old Chestnut Hill Academy. The winner of the triple jump, with a distance of 41’3.75”, was Haverford’s Reggie Harris.