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Newburyport boys, North Reading girls submit repeat title performances in the MSTCA Division 4 state relays

The Pembroke girls' 4X50-meter relay bested all comers with a record-setting performance (24.31 seconds) that surpassed the previous 11-year-old record at the MSTCA Division 4 Relays on Friday at Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center.Erin Clark

The boys’ 4x50-yard shuttle dash was over in a blur, but Newburyport’s record-shattering performance at the MSTCA Division 4 state relays won’t soon be forgotten.

Propelled by Ean Hynes’s early push and captain Will Acquaviva’s electrifying dash on the final leg, the Clippers’ quartet set a new meet record Friday at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center with a winning time of 22.01 seconds. Pembroke was second in 22.29,which also bettered the meet’s previous mark, but was still nearly three-tenths of a second behind Newburyport, who scored 42 points to win the team title over North Reading (34).

The Newburyport boys' track team hoists the hardware for the second year in a row after repeating as champions of the MSTCA Division 4 state relays on Friday at Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center. The Clippers scored 42 points to win the team title over North Reading (34).Matty Wasserman

“We came in as the three seed, so we knew people weren’t necessarily expecting this from us,” Hynes said. “But we knew that if we just could keep working we had this in us, and I’m glad we showed what we are all about.”


After the history-making sprint early in the afternoon, the Clippers also finished first in the distance medley, and second in both the 4x400-meter and 4x800-meter en route to their second-consecutive state relay title.

▪ The girls’ side also had a repeat winner, with powerhouse North Reading scoring 57 points to earn its second consecutive Division 4 crown in dominant fashion. Holliston finished a distant runner-up with 38 points.

Though the long jump was the Hornets’ only first-place finish, the team placed in eight of 10 total relay events.

“When you perform that well across the board, it really is just a proud moment for everyone involved,”said North Reading coach Sotirios Pintzopoulos. “It’s everyone — the 30 girls competing, the six coaches piecing everything together. It puts us in a great spot moving forward.”

▪ Record books in the 4x50-yard shuttle were also ripped up on the girls’ side, as Pembroke topped an 11-year-old meet record with a time of 24.31 seconds. The Titans also narrowly missed a second record in the girls’ 4x200-meter relay with a time of 1 minute, 47.30 seconds — just a half-second off a meet best that’s held up for 29 years.


The Titans were powered by star junior Sarah Claflin, who had the packed indoor venue buzzing after her sparkling performance in the 4x200.

“We know we have one of the fastest girls in the state in Sarah,” said Pembroke coach Greg Zopatti. “We feel like any relay we put together with her in it, we have the chance to do something special.”

▪ The Holliston girls’ 4x800-meter team entered with the expectation of dominance, and didn’t disappoint.

After winning the event by a staggering 39-second margin last year, the Panthers’ returning quartet again proved their worth as the premier force in Division 4.

Ella Bosselman got Holliston rolling with a 10-second lead on the opening leg, and the talented trio behind her widened the gap. Their final time of 9:53.59 was 25 seconds ahead of Medfield (10:18.31).

“We know we have some of the best runners on our team,” said Casey Wig, who ran the Panthers’ third leg. “Being able to push each other every day just makes us stronger when we team up.”

▪ In one of the afternoon’s tightest races, Old Rochester’s Murray Copps made up four seconds in the final leg to secure the boys’ 4x800-meter relay with a time of 8:23.66.

Old Rochester's Murray Copps (above) put the pedal to the metal on the final leg of the boys' 4x800-meter run, making up a four-second deficit to secure a winning time of 8 minutes, 23.66 seconds in the MSTCA Division 4 relays on Friday at Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center.Erin Clark

Matty Wasserman can be reached at matty.wasserman@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @Matty_Wasserman.