On the Fast Track to Success: Staples Boys and Girls Track Take FCIACs First Place



Hannah DeBalsi runs in the 1600 m, an event where she set a Staples and FCIAC record. Staples placed first in FCIACs for both boys and girls track. This is the girls team’s first time coming in first in 23 years.

At Wednesday’s Track FCIAC Championship Meet, girls and boys teams took home first place after 18 total events; boys earned a total of 128 points, passing Danbury and Ridgefield, and girls 100.5 points setting them ahead of Darien and Ridgefield.

“My initial reaction when we found out we won was unreal considering the fact that we haven’t won in several years,” said Logan Murphy ’15.

Although boys have taken gold back home to the Staples track in recent years, the girls team has not won FCIAC first place in the past 23, according to captain Georgia Kursten ’13.

Track meets involve a combination of events from running different distances, to shot-put and javelin, high jumps and hurtles.

On Wednesday, individual girls set records in addition to the team’s first place win. “Hannah Debalsi ‘16 won both the 1600m and 3200m race, as well as crushing both FCIAC meet records,” said Kursten “[And] Tyler Scanlin ‘14 placed 2nd in the 800m race while also breaking the school record, our 4×800 placed 6th, 4×400 placed 2nd.

The boys’ team also pulled through with high rankings in events across the board. (See full scores and times here.)

“We knew going in that if we each did what we needed to do and stuck to the game plan we were going to be a hard team to beat,” said captain Patrick Nolan ’13 “It was great that everyone was able to come together and perform what they needed to in order to get the win over some really great and talented teams.”

“Darien was the defending FCIAC indoor and outdoor champion in track as well as the defending State Open Champion from this past indoor season,” said girls head coach Jesse McCray. “So, it was a great accomplishment for our team to win the Western Division and the FCIAC Championship [and beat Darien].”

According to Peter Elkind ’14, the boys also faced major competition from Danbury, Ridgefield, Darien and even the weather that day.

“The hot weather affected everyone however, making for a tough day and resulting in some slower times and less impressive performances,” said Elkind, “But we were still able to race, jump and throw as best we could in order to pull out a win for the second year in a row.”

Both teams took home this victory after months of training and hard work on the track.

According to team members, each team practices everyday – including Saturdays – for about one to two hours with a variety of workouts in running, lifting, extensive stretching and even Pilates and yoga.
In the end the hard work paid off with success for all. McCray said that the meet was very close at the end and came down to the last race of the night.

“It was all very exciting,” said Kursten “[Coach] JM even did a victory lap with us [when we won].”

“It was incredible run for all” added McCray.