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Chris Jewett leads Woburn to All-State win

CHRIS JEWETT

CHRIS JEWETT

Jewett leads Woburn
to All-State win

The All-State champion in the 400 meters did not always like his signature race. In fact, for a while, he hated it.

“It’s a long race,” said Woburn High School junior Chris Jewett , whose primary focus was once the 100 and 200. “You really need a lot of guts to do it.”

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As the gun fires, a 400-meter runner can neither burst into full sprint mode nor race too conservatively. It’s a balancing act of exertion and preservation.

But as the races became easier for Jewett, and the runners started to appear farther back on final turns, both Jewett and Woburn boys’ track coach Mike Fowle knew the event was suited to Jewett.

Three years of competition culminated in an All-State time of 48.78 seconds in Saturday’s meet at Bridgewater State University. Jewett’s victory was one highlight of many on the day for the Tanners, who made a name for Division 2 and outlasted a set of usual powers with a total of 38 points. Newton North (26), Newton South (22), Oliver Ames (22), and Mansfield (22) trailed.

“We’ve always been up there with the big dogs,” Jewett said. “But we never seem to get it together. Finally, we had the day we were looking for.”

Jewett, also a running back/cornerback on the Tanners’ football team, has had to balance the demands and physicality of the gridiron with his sprinting. The routines and physical strength that football has developed in Jewett may just be the reason why he had a chance to compete in the spring.

He fractured his right ankle heading into the football playoffs last fall, but used a number of workouts and pool training to return just months later in time for the end of the indoor season.

“He’s one of the toughest runners I’ve ever coached,” said Fowle, a math teacher at Woburn High who is in his 11th year leading the program. “He does whatever is asked of him, and will put himself through anything.”

That has meant competing in a variety of events, even if it has sapped his strength. At the Division 2 championships June 1 at Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational High School, he also ran in the 100 (he finished fourth at 11.23) as well as the 4 x 100 and 4 x 400.

It was the 4 x 100 and 4 x 400 that helped push Woburn to the top of the standings at the All-State. In the 4 x 100, Anthony Nguyen , Preston Gordon , Jewett, and Marvin Jean were the top finishers at 42.48, just edging Weymouth (42.68). In the 4 x 400, Gordon, Nguyen, Josh Ercolini , and Jewett took the top prize in 3:19.48, squeezing past Natick (3:19.52). With Dennis Peary finishing second in the pentathlon (3,109), Woburn’s point total continued to grow.

“Coaches always want what’s best for the team, and we epitomized that in the 4 x 400,” Fowle said. “That put us over the top.”

More top finishers

Jewett wasn’t alone in the spotlight in Bridgewater. Burlington’s Paul Hogan won the 2-mile in 9:01.47, a time so fast that observers knew it had to be flirting with history. That proved correct, as Hogan, who broke free of Swampscott’s Matthew Mahoney to win the race, clocked in just behind Alberto Salazar of Wayland’s 1975 meet record of 9:00.00. Mahoney finished second at 9:05.97. . . . St. John’s Prep’s Evan Dombrowski was a fellow first-place finisher, throwing 56 feet 9 inches in the shot put. . . . Peter Garmon of Billerica outlasted the competition in the 800-meter, finishing at 1:52.97. . . . As she has throughout her high school career, Dracut’s Karina Shepard produced when she needed to most, setting a meet record and a personal best in the 800 (2:07.14). . . . North Reading’s Cole Godzinski was the quickest in the 100-meter hurdles (15.04).

Highest local finisher
in Cape Cod Open

Colin Brennan , a pro based out of Indian Ridge Country Club in Andover, was the highest local finisher in the 23d Cape Cod Open, a Massachusetts Golf Association event, on June 4 and 5. The Johnson & Wales graduate shot a 69-75-75-219 at Hyannis Golf Club, which tied him for 16th overall. Josh Salah , a pro out of Gloucester, finished one stroke behind at 72-73-75-220.

Endicott senior
tapped as all-star

Endicott College’s Callie Murphy was named a Division 3 New England women’s lacrosse first-team all-star May 30. The senior from Woburn was a big reason why the Gulls won their ninth straight Commonwealth Coast Conference championship this spring. The tricaptain was also named the CCC Co-Offensive Player of the Year.

Murphy, a nursing major, asserted herself as one of Endicott’s all-time best. The midfielder finished her career at the Beverly school with the fourth-highest point total in program history (136-97-233) .

Jeff Powalisz can be reached at jcpowalisz@gmail.com.
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