It didn’t take long for the Riverhead High School girls winter track coach, Justin Cobis, to realize that he might have a special 4 x 200-meter relay team this year. After assembling a team of three freshmen and one sophomore and then watching their first race, it dawned on him. “We thought this [school] record may be going down this year,” he said.
And it did.
Riverhead’s new indoor 4 x 200 record now belongs to Delu Rizzo, Emma Panciocco, Eve Pittman and Miasha Pittman. They broke the record Saturday night in the Molloy Stanner Games at The Armory in New York City with a time of 1 minute, 50.76 seconds. They took second in their heat. The previous school record of 1:52.12 was set in 2005 by Angela Smith, Tavina Hubbard, Kateria Almenas and Ashley Lewis.
“Not only did they beat the record, but they beat it handily,” said Cobis.
The foursome was the logical selection following a speed test at the start of the season in which the team members were given 45 seconds to see how far they could run in that time. “These are the four girls that performed the best,” said Cobis.
Cobis said the four Riverheaders were well aware of what they had done.
“They broke it by such a margin that you knew immediately that there was no doubt,” he said. “They knew immediately, so they were extremely jubilant right on the track. They had something that they were building towards and working towards together.”
In addition, Miasha Pittman came in second in the freshman 55-meter dash in a season-best 7.76 seconds. She also ran the 300 in a season-best 43.54 (close to the school record of 43.24 held by Smith), bringing her 33rd place.
“Miasha Pittman absolutely hates losing,” Cobis said. “She is one of the most focused athletes I’ve had in the last 10 years.”
In the Art Mitchell Invitational on Sunday at Suffolk County Community College, Christina Yakaboski won the freshman 1,500 in 5:13.80. Other Riverheaders did well, too. Megan Kielbasa was second in the freshman 1,000 in 3:22.26, Rizzo was second in the freshman 300 in 44.41 and Miasha Pittman took third in the freshman 300 in 45.25. Emma Conroy finished fifth in the freshman 1,500 in 5:19.44.
Photo caption: From left, Eve Pittman, Delu Rizzo, Emma Panciocco and Miasha Pittman broke Riverhead’s indoor 4 x 200 record Saturday night in the Molloy Stanner Games at The Armory in New York City. (Credit: Justin Cobis)