Schalmont’s Flower blossoming again

Schalmont's Julia Flower has four wins in two indoor track meets

Schalmont High School junior Julia Flower is running again, and winning again.

After missing most of the cross country season with a stress fracture in her ankle, Flower has bounced back with four victories in the Sabres’ first two indoor meets.

“She’s back on track and looks great,” said Schalmont distance coach Rich Kranick. “She’s going to do some good stuff this indoor season.”

Flower’s fall season consisted of two dual meets and a successful defense of her title at Voorheesville’s Blackbird Invitational.

“She won at Voorheesville, but the girl from Albany Academy [Emily Acker] was a little too close,” said Kranick. “The next race, she wins but not in Julia Flower fashion. The third time, out she struggled. Couldn’t make it, and we couldn’t figure out what the problem was. It took two and a half weeks.”

Kranick said Flower was told to stop running for six weeks after a stress fracture in the joint below her left ankle was discovered. That doesn’t mean the former swimmer and multi-Section II running champion quit working.

“She got back in the pool. She got on the bike. She got in the weight room,” said Kranick. “She definitely looks a little thicker than you might remember her.”

Flower was impressive in her return to competitition, winning her age 13-19 division and placing second overall at the Thanksgiving day 5-kilometer Ellis Medicine Cardiac Classic in Schenectady. She won the 1,500 and took third in the 600 in her first indoor dual meet on Dec. 6, and in her second race last Saturday, she took first in the 1,000 and 1,500 and joined with Samantha Reagan, Teyana Harres and younger sister Kerry for a victory in the 1,600 sprint medley relay.

“Her best in the 1,500 is 4:46. The other day, she ran a 4:51,” said Kranick. “She’s going to be just fine.”

Flower won the Section II Class C cross country championship as a sophomore. She followed up with a pair of sectional indoor titles (1,000, 1,500), and picked up two more area titles in the outdoor season (800, 1,500).

nations best

Shenendehowa’s 4-x-1 mile relay team posted the fastest time in the nation this season with an 18:12.09 at last weekend’s Jim Mitchell Invitational at the Armory Track & Field Center in New York.

Nick Matson, Tyler Schmidt, Mitchell Halpern and Collin Rowe also set a meet record while Bay Shore (18:41.05) and Kingston (18:41.77) ran second and third.

Shaker (17:21.56, 2012 New Balance Nationals, Armory) and Shenendehowa (17:25.94, 2004 National Scholastic Indoor Championships, Armory) are Section II’s all-time leaders in the 4-x-1 mile.

tooker top junior

Aidan Tooker of Saratoga Springs has been named the cross country Junior of the Year by the New York State Sportswriters Association.

Tooker was selected to the all-state Class A first team for the second year in a row. He was tabbed the state’s top sophomore following the 2013 season, and was chosen New York’s best freshman and made the all-state third team after the 2012 campaign.

Tooker bounced back from a third at the Suburban Council meet to win the Section II title, and placed fourth and fifth, respectively, at the state public school and Federation meets. He was fourth at the Nike Cross National New York regional event, and 36th at the NXN championships.

All-state first-team honors also went to seniors Jeremy Spiezio of Greenwich (Class C), Pat Murphy of Duanesburg (Class D) and Daryn Hutchings of Argyle (Class D).

Spiezio was an all-state Class D first-team pick as a junior and sophomore. His senior season included wins at the Grout Run in Schenectady, the Wasaren League meet and the Section II meet. He ran fourth at the state public school meet and was fifth at the NXN New York regional.

Murphy and Hutchings placed one-two at the sectional and state public school championships. Murphy’s standout season also included victories at the Fort Plain and Burnt Hills invitationals, and at the Western Athletic Conference meet.

Murphy made the all-state Class D second team as a junior.


Class A

Aidan Tooker, 11, Saratoga Springs (first team); Noah Carey, 10, Guilderland (third); Jake Johnson, 11, Colonie (third); Paul Nichols, 11, Shaker (fifth); Matt McDermott, 12, Niskayuna (sixth).

Class B

Jonah Allard, 10, Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons (fourth); Michael Miller, 12, Lansingburgh (fifth); Josh Moeckel, 12, Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake (sixth).

Class C

Jeremy Spiezio, 12, Greenwich (first); Sean McAneny, 11, Greenville (second); Devin Akerley, 12, Corinth (third); Chandler Hansen, 12, Greenwich (fourth).

Class D

Pat Murphy, 12, Duanesburg (first); Daryn Hutchings, 12, Argyle (first).

record streak halted

With a 49-41 victory, Greenville ended Maple Hill’s Section II girls’ basketball record for consecutive league wins at 132 Monday night.

Maple Hill’s Patroon Conference streak began in December of 2006, and topped the 112 straight Suburban Council wins Shenendehowa recorded from 1986-93.

Greenville used an effective 3-2 zone defense to stymie Maple Hill, which had 19 turnovers and shot

15-for-45 from the field. Senior point guard Bethany Mitchell was among the Greenville standouts with 11 points, seven rebounds, five assists and three steals.

Maple Hill won its first four games by double digits.

Maple Hill’s streak reached 100 games in December of 2012 with a win over Chatham.

Categories: High School Sports

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