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Track: Streaks' Bianco has long, successful day

Track: Streaks' Bianco has long, successful day

Tuesday was a long day for Ellery Bianco, but when it was over, the Saratoga Springs junior was plea

Tuesday was a long day for Ellery Bianco, but when it was over, the Saratoga Springs junior was pleased with her effort in the Group 1 sectional championships.

Bianco won her speciality, the 400 hurdles, finished second in the 100 hurdles and ran third in her final event of the day, the 200 meters. She also anchored the Blue Streaks’ winning 400 relay team, as Saratoga placed second to Shenendehowa, 160-153.

The Blue Streaks won the boys’ team title.

“The four events really get to me, especially during Suburbans and sectionals,” Bianco said after she finished her day’s work as the sun set on the University at Albany. “We didn’t have Suburbans this year, but today, with the trials, the semis and finals, its a long day.”

After finishing nearly a second to Nikari Carota of Queensbury in the 100 hurdles, Bianco had no trouble in the longer hurdles race, an event she picked up quickly this season.

“At the beginning of the season, I really took a liking to the 100 hurdles. I was comfortable going over the hurdles. I wasn’t afraid to attack them,” she said.

“I had always made it through the 400 easily. So my coach put two and two together, and said ‘You’re going to try the 400 hurdles.’ ”

It was a great decision.

Bianco was such a quick study that she is among the best in the state, with the state meet two weeks away.

“The first time I ran it, I was like one second off the school record,” she said. “By the third time I ran it, I broke the school record. Saturday at the Eddy Meet, I ran the No. 2 time in New York state.

“You could say the 400 hurdles has gone well for me.”

Bianco needed just over one minute (1:00.55) to win the 400 hurdles at the Eddy Meet. She ran it in 1:03.68 Tuesday.

Bianco credits efficiency as her key.

“It’s so much different than the 100 hurdles,” said Bianco, who also ran in the state indoor meet and plays soccer for the Blue Streaks. “In the 100 hurdles, you just have to be fast all the time. Get off the line perfectly, attack the first hurdle and have perfect form.

“In the 400 hurdles, form makes you more efficient, but if you can run a 400, you can work on your form and take time off little by little.

“And your mindset is so much different. You just take it one hurdle at a time, get to the first hurdle, have good form, get over it clean and move on to the next hurdle.”

The event did take a lot out of Bianco.

“I didn’t think I was going to make it,” she said of the 200 meters. “The 400 hurdles is hard to recover from, so it was really intimidating knowing I had to give everything I had in the 200.”

Still, it was an improvement over her sophomore year.

“Last year, when the 200 was my last event, I died,” Bianco said. “I had a horrible time. This year, I was able to stay strong the whole time. I think it shows how much I’ve improved as an athlete. I would never have been able to do that last year.”

“I may not have taken first, but it was very satisfying to know I gave my best and was able to help out the team.”

She helped out the team to the tune of 24 points on her own, to go with the 10 her relay team accounted for.

That group — senior Kelsey Briddell, junior Olivia Ventre, freshman Mimi Liebers and Bianco — had also won the Johnstown Invitational.

“Our 4x100 relay has really come along,” Bianco said. “I think what sets us apart from other teams is our handoffs. We really work on those, and they’re very, very crisp.”

Bianco’s days of competing in four events are finished for the season.

“The state qualifier, and then the state meet, it’s more about what’s best for you,” she said. “I want to represent Saratoga at the state meet. But I haven’t quite yet figured out how I’m going to do that. But I’m definitely going to focus on just one or two events.”


Team scores: Saratoga Springs 136, Bethlehem 96, Shenendehowa 75, Albany 66, Queensbury 40, Shaker 38, Colonie 28, Guilderland 25, LaSalle 20, Niskayuna 17, Columbia 17, Ballston Spa 15, CBA 13, Schenectady 2, Troy 1.

100 — James Willard (Alb), 11.17; Dylan Thompson (L) 11.34; John Strickland (Colm), 11.47. 200 — Nesta Littlejohn (Alb), 22.53; Shawn Bleichart (Shen), 22.75; Syeed Holtzclaw (Alb), 22.78. 400 — Rob Haughton (Sar), 48.88; Austin Ellis (CBA), 50.20; Ben Wells (Alb), 50.53. 800 — Jake Johnson (Coln), 1;53.3; Collin Rowe (Shen), 1:57.77; Joseph Verro (Sar), 1:58.74. 1,600 — Joseph Verro (Sar), 4:21.55; Steve Booker (Beth), 4:22.05; Collin Rowe (Shen), 4:22.39. 3,200 — Aidan Tooker (Sar), 9:23.00; Steve Booker (Beth), 9;28.95; Noah Carey (Guild), 9;29.61.

110 hurdles — Shawn Bleichart (Shen), 14.68; Rob Houghton (Sar), 15.93; Justin Burke (L), 16.03. 400 hurdles — Corey Briggs (Sar), 56.90; Conor Kimmey (Beth), 56.98; Daniel Goss (L), 59.04. 3,000 steeplechase — Aidan Tooker (Sar), 9:34.76; Noah Bell (Beth), 9:47.34; Brent Freestone (Sar), 9;56.09. 400 relay — Albany (Denzel Keyes, Nesta Littlejohn, James Wlllard, Syeed Holtzclaw), 43.19; Saratoga, 43.81.1; Shenendehowa, 44.05. 1,600 relay — Saratoga (Jay Navin, Elliott Favreau, Nick Anderson, Rob Haughton), 3:23.05; Albany, 3:23.21; Bethlehem, 3:25.07. 3,200 relay — Shenendehowa (Kyle Wlaschin, Connor Buhrmeister, Robert Benson, Jack Vite), 8:08.35; Bethlehem, 8:09.40; Saratoga, 8:10.11.

High jump — Liam nartens (Beth), 6-0; Jack Fitzgerald (BS), 5-10; Harrison Bickmore (Guild), 5-10. Pole vault — Thomas Conboy (Sar), 13-0; Luke Dutcher (Beth), 12-0; Scott Krulcik (Sar), 12-0. Long jump — Brian Greenberg (Beth), 21-1 3/4; Brian Guntharo (Shak), 21-0; Nick Anderson (Sar), 20-3 3/4. Triple jump — Ronel Forde (Shak), 45-11 1/4; Brian Greenberg (Beth), 44-9; Christopher Wolcott (Alb), 44-0. Shot put — David Slattery (Qby), 49-1; Nick Green (Sar), 48-9; Stephen VanHoesen (Nisk), 46-4. Discus — David Slattery (Qby), 143-3; David Carloni (Shen), 142-1; Nick Green (Sar), 141-2. Pentathlon — Alex Escazda (Colm), 2,813; Keeghan O’Leary (Qby), 2,729; Dan Kehrer (Coln), 2,695.


Team scores: Shenendehowa 160, Saratoga Springs 153, Columbia 67.5, Guilderland 38.5, Shaker 36, Colonie 35, Queensbury 33, Albany 28, Bethlehem 19, Niskayuna 11, Ballston Spa 8.

100 — Olivia Ventre (Sar), 12.56; Jahari Coleman (Alb), 12.62; Kerris Moore (Shen), 12.78. 200 — Alexandra Tudor (Shen), 25.30; Natasja Johnston (Colm), 25.46; Ellery Bianco (Sar), 25.72. 400 — Sarah Knowles (Shen), 56.27; Audrey Meany (Shen), 58.26; Selena Lott (Colm), 58.81. 800 — Amelia Mooney (Sar), 2:16.78; Julia Zachgo (Shen), 2:18.99; Caroline Rusch (Shen), 2:19.10. 1,500 — Julia Zachgo (Shen), 4:46.32; Marryanna Lansing (Shak), 4:47.45; Estela Smith (Sar), 4:48.03. 3,000 — Danielle Jordan (Shen), 10:19.29; Megan Kellogg (Qby), 10:20.50; Peyton Engborg (Sar), 10:41.82.

100 hurdles — Nikari Carota (Qby), 14.92; Ellery Bianco (Sar), 15.49; Abby Marco (Guild), 15.51. 400 hurdles — Ellery Bianco (Sar), 1:03.68; Ronke Osipitan (Coln), 1:04.71; Abby Marco (Guild), 1:05.56. 2,000 steeplechase — Colleen Maloney (Colm), 7:11.08; Mariellen Penzer (Sar), 7:17.03; Emily Burns (Guild), 7:19.99.

400 relay — Saratoga (Kelsey Broddell, Olivia Ventre, Mimi Liebers, Ellery Bianco), 48.99l Shenendehowa, 49.40; Columbia, 49.76. 1,600 relay — Columbia (Alison Romer, Asia Cornwall, Selena Lott, Nastasja Johnson), 3:54.41; Colonie, 3:55.58; Shenendehowa, 3:55.68. 3,200 relay — Guilderland (Sarah Forman, Jennifer Hoffman, Jenna Robinso, Emily Burns), 9:22.32; Saratoga, 9;23.43; Shenendehowa, 9:26.65.

High jump — Grace Smith (Beth), 5-5; Rachael Crose (BS), 5-2; Tiaria Gaines (Alb), 5-1. Pople vault — Kara Snyder (Coln), 11-6; Marlaina Murphy (Sar), 11-0; Mary Sunukjian (Shen), 9-0. Long jump— Nastasja Johnson (Colm), 18-0; Toluwa Akinyemi (Shen), 16-2; Alexandra Tudor (Shen), 16-1 1/2. Triple jump — Toluwa Akinyemi (Shen), 38-6 1/2; Marlaina Murpjy (Sar), 34-6 1/2; Nia Joyner (Shak), 34-0. Shot put — Grayce French (Sar), 38-6 1/2; Jillian Shippee (Shen), 37-11 1/4; Abigail Addo (Shak), 34-0. Discus — Jessica Craven (Shen), 118-7; Grayce French (Sar), 116-4; Becky Rossier (Shak), 103-0. Pentathllon — Eileen Bequette (Alb), 2,658; Cali Palumbo (Colm), 2,570; Stephanie Gengel (Qby), 2,535.

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