Newtown High School senior Jenna Calandro earned the Class LL state title in the pole vault event by clearing the bar with a height of 11 feet, seven inches in the championship meet at the Floyd Little Athletic Center in New Haven on February 8.
It may have been a little short of Calandro’s school indoor track record-setting 12-foot-3 effort but it was enough to beat out her closest competitor by more than a foot. And, what’s more, it set a Class LL championship record.
The girls’ squad scored 12 points and placed 14th among 22 schools to score in the meet, and the boys had seven points and were 20thamong 24. Staples High of Westport, with 63 points, won the girls’ meet, and Danbury, with 64, took the top spot in the boys’ competition.
Calandro scored ten points with her first-place finish in the pole vault event. She’s put together an impressive high school career in a short time. Calandro first started pole vaulting over nine feet only last winter, Newtown Coach Doug Russell notes. She tied Lauren O’Connell’s outdoor record, also with a 12-foot-3 effort.
“She is naturally talented but she puts in a large amount of time in making herself better,” Russell said.
Teammate Amy Anyoha has also had a standout career and continued her efforts in the shot put event by taking fifth, with an effort of 33-05, for Newtown’s other two points.
The Nighthawks had plenty of strong performances in events ranging from sprints to relays to jumping.
Shelby Tolla was 23rd in the 300 meter dash, with a time 46.90. Jess Keller placed ninth in the 600 meter run with a time of 1:44.65. Erin Tressler came in 16th in the 1000 meter run in 3:21.86. Brianne Moulder came in 15th in the 3200 in a time of 12:32.73. Jillian Vazquez finished 15th in the 55 meter hurdles in a time of 10.12. Vazquez was 18th in the long jump competition (14-02.50).
The 4x200 relay team of Jacqueline Mooney, Taylor Zingaro, Nicole Russo, and Calandro, was 16th in 1:57.37. The 4x400 relay team of Tolla, Russo, Keller, and Zingaro, was 11th in 4:24.99. The 4x800 relay team of Tressler, Emma Bayuk, Hannah Schwartz, and Keller, was ninth in 10:33.17. In the 1600 sprint medley relay race, the team of Russo, Makenna Cerney, Zingaro, and Hannah Booth, was 14th in 4:45.57.
On the boys’ side, the Nighthawks jumped their way to seven points as Kevin Gorman earned six points with his third-place effort in the long jump event (24-04.75). Cole Terry earned a point in the high jump competition with a leap of 5-08.
James Carney placed 12th in the 300 by crossing the finish line in 38.43. Jason Ferrari came in 26th in the 300 with a time of 40.31.
The 4x400 relay group of Sam Boland, Wesley Morlock, Carney, and Matt Mossbarger, was 11th in 3:41.24. The 4x800 relay team of Morlock, David Csordas, Nick Swenson, and Ethan Burg, placed ninth in 8:57.13. The 1600 sprint medley team of James Leidlein, Forrest Weatherby, Paul O’Leary, and Csordas, came in 14th in 4:04.25.
In the shot put event, Elijah Klorczyk came in ninth (42-04).