From rookie to record holder: Concord’s Nick Reynolds reaches javelin milestone in his first track season

Concord’s Ella Goulas competes in the triple jump at the NHIAA Division I track and field championships at Portsmouth High School on Saturday. Goulas won the triple jump title with a leap of 36 feet, 11.5 inches, and also finished third in the high jump and long jump to lead the Concord girls to third as a team.

Concord’s Ella Goulas competes in the triple jump at the NHIAA Division I track and field championships at Portsmouth High School on Saturday. Goulas won the triple jump title with a leap of 36 feet, 11.5 inches, and also finished third in the high jump and long jump to lead the Concord girls to third as a team. JAY SMITH / NHXCTF

Concord’s Ella Goulas competes in the triple jump at the NHIAA Division I track and field championships at Portsmouth High School on Saturday, May 25, 2024. Goulas won the triple jump title with a leap of 36 feet, 11.5 inches, and also finished third in the high jump and long jump to lead the Concord girls to third as a team.

Concord’s Ella Goulas competes in the triple jump at the NHIAA Division I track and field championships at Portsmouth High School on Saturday, May 25, 2024. Goulas won the triple jump title with a leap of 36 feet, 11.5 inches, and also finished third in the high jump and long jump to lead the Concord girls to third as a team. JAY SMITH / NHXCTF

Concord’s Alain Twite competes in the triple jump at the NHIAA Division I track and field championships at Portsmouth High School on Saturday. Twite finished second in the triple jump with a leap of 43 feet, 8 inches, and also finished second in the high jump and long jump to lead the Concord boys to fourth place overall.

Concord’s Alain Twite competes in the triple jump at the NHIAA Division I track and field championships at Portsmouth High School on Saturday. Twite finished second in the triple jump with a leap of 43 feet, 8 inches, and also finished second in the high jump and long jump to lead the Concord boys to fourth place overall. JAY SMITH / NHXCTF

Concord’s Colby Nyhan goes over the bar in the pole vault at the NHIAA Division I track and field championships at Portsmouth High School on Saturday. Nyhan cleared 14-6 to lead the Concord boys to fourth as a team.

Concord’s Colby Nyhan goes over the bar in the pole vault at the NHIAA Division I track and field championships at Portsmouth High School on Saturday. Nyhan cleared 14-6 to lead the Concord boys to fourth as a team. JAY SMITH / NHXCTF

Concord’s Nick Reynolds throws the javelin at the NHIAA Division I championship at Portsmouth High School on Saturday. Reynolds’ best throw of 205-10 set a new Division I record.

Concord’s Nick Reynolds throws the javelin at the NHIAA Division I championship at Portsmouth High School on Saturday. Reynolds’ best throw of 205-10 set a new Division I record. JAY SMITH / NHXCTF

Concord’s Nick Reynolds uncorks a javelin throw at Saturday’s D-I meet. Reynolds set a record with a toss of 205 feet, 10 inches.

Concord’s Nick Reynolds uncorks a javelin throw at Saturday’s D-I meet. Reynolds set a record with a toss of 205 feet, 10 inches. JAY SMITH / NHXCTF

By DAN ATTORRI

Monitor staff

Published: 05-28-2024 9:39 PM

Prior to this spring Nick Reynolds had never competed in track and field. He hadn’t even run a lap on the track at Memorial Field. In fact, he didn’t even want to be on the team.

But in the span of 10 weeks since the season began, Reynolds — an All-State Honorable Mention soccer defender and former baseball pitcher — transformed from a track and field novice into a state record-breaker.

Reynolds threw the javelin 205 feet, 10 inches in Saturday’s Division I championship at Portsmouth High School, setting a division record. That mark also broke the state record of 200-9, set by Manchester Central’s Jacob Stanko in 2016, although state records can only be set at the Meet of Champions.

Reynolds has a chance to make that record official on Sunday when the Meet of Champions will be held at the University of New Hampshire.

It took some convincing, but after his girlfriend Allyse Brien, a senior on the Concord track team, and a few of his friends on the team insisted, Reynolds finally gave in and joined the team for his final season as a high school athlete.

At the very least, he thought, he would be able to stay in shape for soccer. Reynolds will play NCAA Division III soccer for Utica College in New York starting in the fall.

“A lot of help from the outside,” said Reynolds, recalling how he got his start with javelin.

Reynolds’ friend Ayoob Ismael, a 2023 Concord High graduate and former thrower on the track team, showed him some pointers.

Article continues after...

Yesterday's Most Read Articles

‘Where they go, I don’t know’ – Concord police clear backyard encampment along train tracks
Chichester animal rescue Live and Let Live Farm stripped of pet vendor license amid bitter feud with Department of Agriculture
Hiking bunny continues to bring joy to family after loss
Hopkinton family donates 455 acres for land conservation
A Contoocook historic building to be updated for modern apartment living
Hometown Hero: Jim Milliken has spent 8 decades making Concord ‘a better place to live’

“He came back on one of his breaks and walked me through what to start with,” Reynolds said. “Then I threw 160 feet in trials, and after that they put me in javelin.”

Reynolds’ casual throw in trials in the first week of the season would’ve put him in fourth place in Saturday’s Division I championship with hardly any training. So he started training with Skylar Staffier, Concord’s throwing coach.

Adjusting from pitching mechanics to javelin mechanics took some time, but Reynolds put the work in.

“Nick’s the kind of guy that everything he does, he just throws himself into it, no pun intended,” Staffier said. “He goes home and he watches film, he studies form, he goes through his own videos to see what he can improve on. That’s just who he is as a person.”

“Using your body to throw is one of the biggest things (with javelin),” Reynolds said. “I focused on working on form, trying to get that down before I threw too much. Getting that down was key. Adjusting from a pitcher to javelin does come with some bad habits, though, like how I was dropping my shoulder.”

Balancing technique and volume of throws was also different than the training he was accustomed to for baseball.

“During the week, I’ll only throw (at one or two practices) to save myself for meets, and I’ll work on form,” Reynolds said. “For pitching, I could throw 80, 100 pitches and be fine. But with javelin, I don’t want to throw more than four or five times in a row.”

Reynolds also bought into the team culture.

“He just seems like he is trying to have a good time,” Concord assistant Zach Procek said. “He joined track this year for the first time and throws himself into everything wholeheartedly to see what he can do best. But at the same time, he’s trying to have a good time and have good relationships with his teammates and coaches.”

“Incredibly humble,” Staffier added. “He got the state record and the only reaction from him was a big smile, and he gave me a hug. No huge celebrations or anything; he’s just a humble kid.”

Reynolds is now looking to also compete in track and field at Utica. Reynolds started getting attention from college coaches after throwing 197-10 at the Loucks Games, a nationally recognized elite meet, in White Plains, N.Y., in May. His record throw of 205-10 puts him at No. 8 in the country, according to athletic.net.