Preview: A look at upcoming NHIAA winter championships and playoffs in the next week

By DAN ATTORRI

Monitor staff

Published: 02-10-2023 8:36 AM

Some seasons began in late November, others really just began with the arrival of the recent snow, but regardless of how they started, it’s time to think playoffs for nearly all NHIAA winter sports. 

Several champions – both individual and team – will be crowned this weekend. Swimming championships will be contested on Saturday as they were in pre-COVID times, at the University of New Hampshire’s Swasey Pool after a two-year hiatus. Indoor track will have division championships at Dartmouth College on Sunday – the first indoor track championships of any sort – for the first time in three years. That’s only the beginning of a busy postseason. 

Alpine skiing championships will be held on Monday and Tuesday at various mountains throughout the state with area individuals teams expecting to do well. 

Team sports start end-of-year tourneys as well, with Division III and D-IV basketball teams tipping off the opening rounds on Tuesday and Wednesday.

See below for a list of tournament events taking place over the next week, plus a preview of area competitors in this weekend’s swimming and indoor track championships (events and top six seeds in parentheses).

Upcoming events

■Swimming championships will be at UNH’s Swasey Pool on Saturday. D-II in the morning session starting at 8:45 a.m. and D-I in the evening starting at 4:45 p.m.

■Gymnastics state championships will be at A2 Gym and Cheer in Salem in two sessions (10 a.m. and 1 p.m.)

■Race 2 of the N.H. Nordic Coaches Series is Saturday at 10 a.m. at White Mountains Regional High School. The second of a two-part event, the Hopkinton girls are currently in second place out of 24 teams heading into Saturday’s skate race. The Hopkinton boys’ Nordic team is third out of 25.

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■Indoor track division championships will be at Dartmouth College’s Leverone Field House on Sunday. D-I will start at 10 a.m., D-II begins at 4 p.m.

■Alpine skiing championships will be held throughout the state on Monday and Tuesday. D-I girls (Mount Sunapee), D-II boys (Crotched), D-III girls (Gunstock) and D-IV boys (Loon) race on Monday; D-I boys (Mount Sunapee), D-II girls (Cranmore), D-III boys (Gunstock) and D-IV girls (Crotched) race Tuesday. The Concord girls are undefeated against D-I competition this year. Bow’s boys’ team finished runner-up in D-II last season, led by Patrick Wachsmuth in the slalom (defending champion) and giant slalom (last year’s runner-up). The Hopkinton boys won the D-III title last year, while the Kearsarge girls were second in D-III. 

■D-III boys’ basketball preliminary round is played on Tuesday, the quarterfinals on Friday. The D-III girls play those two rounds on Wednesday and Saturday, respectively.

■D-IV boys’ hoops contests a play-in game on Friday. 

■Wrestling division championships will be held on Feb. 18 at Londonderry High School (D-I), Hollis-Brookline (D-II) and Bow (D-III). Matches start at 9 a.m. in all locations.

Swimming

D-I girls’ qualifiers:  Concord – Lily Peterson (third 100 yard breast, fifth 200 individual medley) and Molly Nyhan (100 yard breast).

D-II boys’ qualifiers: Belmont – Kyle Dumais (second 50 freestyle, fifth 100 breast). Bow – Ryan Powers (first 50 freestyle, first 100 freestyle) and Ian Klements (100 freestyle). Coe-Brown – Chris Raymond (first 200 freestyle, fourth 100 freestyle), Eric Boheen (100 butterfly, 100 back). Kearsarge – Mason Russell (100 butterfly, 100 breast).

D-II girls’ qualifiers:  Belmont – Ella Wineriter (100 breast). Bishop Brady – Danielle Lacourse (50 freestyle). Bow – Lena Thompson (third 100 butterfly, fourth 100 back), Lorraine Schaffner (fourth 100 freestyle, fourth 500 freestyle), Emily Hou (100 breast), 200 medley relay, 200 freestyle relay (sixth) and 400 freestyle relay. Kearsarge – Maggie Ellison (200 butterfly), 200 medley relay, 200 freestyle relay.

Notes: None of the Capital Area teams have the roster sizes and depth to contend for a state title with the likes of powerhouse teams Hollis-Brookline, Hanover, Oyster River and Windham, but with several top-four seeds and three relays on the girls’ side, Bow could crack the top 10, possibly the top five.

Indoor track

D-I boys’ qualifiers:  Concord – Josiah Conley (third 3,000, 1,500), Shaun Fifield (1,500), Liam Gleason (1,000), Liam White (600), Carter Cutrer (high jump), Ayoob Ismael (shot put), 4x200 (fifth).

D-I girls’ qualifiers:  Concord – Ella Goulas (second long jump, second high jump), Shelly Smith (second 3,000), Kelley Mikelson (third high jump), Morgan Doherty (third 55 hurdles, fifth long jump), Katherine Muller (fourth 55 hurdles), Ayva Mullen (55 dash, long jump), Madeline Muller (300), 4x400 (fourth), 4x200 (sixth).

D-II boys’ qualifiers:  Belmont – Damien Sanborn (sixth 55 dash), David Tripp (55 hurdles), 4x200. Bishop Brady – Josh Gentchos (third 55 dash, fourth long jump), Alan Yap (55 dash, long jump), Jack Beauchesne (55 dash), 4x200 (first). Bow – Sean Nicholls (shot put). Coe-Brown – Aidan Cox (first 3,000, first 1,500), Jamie Lano (first 1,000, second 1,500), Gavin Demas (fifth 600), Tyler Tkaczyk (third 1,500, fifth 3,000), Nikhil Chavda (sixth 3,000, 1,500), Matthew Corriveau (second 300, second long jump, fourth high jump), Cameron Lee (55 hurdles), Sanjith Nomula (1,000), Benjamin Robinson (600), Rex Betts-Levine (shot put), Elias Warner (shot put), 4x400 (third), 4x800 (fourth), 4x200 (sixth). John Stark – Rio Calle (sixth long jump, high jump), Sam Kinsey-Turner (sixth high jump), Alex Keirstead (1,000), Eli Lemire (1,500), Logan Montgomery (high jump), Rory Magoon (shot put). Merrimack Valley – Bishow Thapa (first 600), Mychal Reynolds (sixth 55 hurdles), Tyler Wallace (55 hurdles), Marshall Carey-Matthews (600), 4x400 (fifth), 4x200. Pembroke – Jimmy Valotto (fourth shot put), Gavin Currier (high jump), 4x200. Winnisquam – Aidan Donahue (second high jump). 

D-II girls’ qualifiers: Belmont – Emma Winslow (second long jump, fourth 55 dash), Ava Lacasee (55 dash), Adeline Takantjas (55 hurdles), 4x400 (fifth), 4x200. Bow – Maya Brochu (fourth 3,000, fifth 1,500), Julia Hou (sixth 1,000), Sage Konstantakos (55 dash), Lexi Insana (600), Sabrina Bernard (high jump, long jump), Charlotte Larochelle (long jump), 4x800 (second), 4x400, 4x200. Coe-Brown – Natalie Sicard (third 55 hurdles, sixth long jump), Anushka Chavda (third 300, fifth 55 dash), Sheldyn Fisher (third 1,500), Emma Larson (3,000), Samantha Perron (1,000), Francesca Ferguson (1,000), Anna Bergeron (600), Paige Murdough (600), Madeleine Grenier (shot put), 4x800 (fourth), 4x200 (fifth), 4x400. John Stark – Rylee Barnard (1,500). Kearsarge – Amelia Lefebvre (tied second high jump, fifth 1,000, third shot put), Molly Ellison (third 3,000), Ellie Wimer (sixth 600), Juliet Faria (55 dash), Gabrielle Lamb (shot put), 4x400 (third). Merrimack Valley – Victoria Leak (55 hurdles, shot put, long jump), Samantha Kimball (1,000), Madison Geddes (1,000), 4x800 (fifth), 4x400. Pembroke – Zoie Wall (sixth 55 hurdles, 55 dash), Natalie Longacre (shot put), 4x200. Winnisquam – Becc Kulengosky (fourth shot put).

Notes: The Concord girls finished second in the D-I outdoor track championship last spring and the Tide are in a good position to do the same indoors. The D-II girls’ championship looks like a two-team race between Oyster River and Newmarket for the title, but several teams, including Belmont, Bow, Coe-Brown and Kearsarge could be in contention for the bronze. The best shot at a local team champion comes from the Coe-Brown boys in D-II. The Bears have won the last three outdoor track titles and with qualifiers in 11 of 13 events, six top-two seeds and plenty of depth, Coe-Brown is in the driver’s seat.

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