City track championships

Latin Academy’s boys, girls wear track crowns

Latin Academy’s Xavier Hill shows excellent form en route to winning the 110-meter hurdles at White Stadium.
barry chin/globe staff
Latin Academy’s Xavier Hill shows excellent form en route to winning the 110-meter hurdles at White Stadium.

Latin Academy edged O’Bryant, 96-95, at White Stadium on Tuesday to win its second straight Boston City League girls’ track and field championship.

“This, I have to say, in all the years I’ve been doing these meets, is the closest meet I’ve ever seen,” said City League track commissioner Mary Grant, who has been involved in city track for more than 30 years.

First-year program New Mission collected 76 points to round out the top 3.


“It’s really good for not only our kids but [O’Bryant],’’ said Latin Academy coach Brian Leussler. “I love that level of competition. I want the kids to be out here thinking every point matters, every kid who comes in fifth or sixth is going to make a big difference.’’

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It was a clean sweep for Leussler as his boys were also victorious with 98 points, followed by O’Bryant with 95. South Boston, whose coach, Jim de Mello, is retiring after 25 years, came in third with 57 points.

It was the first outdoor championship for the Latin Academy boys during Leussler’s 11-year tenure. Latin lost to O’Bryant last year by a half-point.

“We were focusing on that because last year, that half-point, I was just like, man, we almost had it,’ but now that we got it, it’s really good,” said Malik Anderson, the winner of the 200-meter dash and the triple jump.

After Monday it looked as if O’Bryant was in position to sweep the titles. Leussler’s girls and boys were down to O’Bryant by 32 and 19 points, respectfully.


“It’s proof why they call it track and field,’’ Leussler said. “[Monday] was all the field and they were 30 points ahead, [Tuesday] was all track and we got the 30 points back. It was a really hard-fought meet, so I’m happy for my team.”

A majority of Latin Academy’s speed came from its all freshman 4 x 400 relay team of Britney Firmin, Leigha Millis, Imani Pressley, and Ashley Lewis, which finished first.

“We work really well together so I didn’t have any doubts,” said Firmin, who also won the 800-meter dash. “We just all promised to all work our best because it’s a team effort, so we were just all trying to run as fast as we could to get a fast time.”

Even though Latin Academy’s boys and girls celebrated a victory lap after collecting their trophies, for cocaptain Anderson, the championship was a continuation of an already successful season.

“I got to see everyone try and it really makes everyone feel happy,” Anderson said. “I’m glad everyone did their best and winning just adds the icing on the cake.”

Globe correspondent Justin A. Rice contributed to this report. For more on city track, go to