06/07/14 3:09pm
06/07/2014 3:09 PM
Shoreham-Wading River senior Ryan Udvadia ran a personal best time in the 1,600 Saturday in Syracuse. (Credit: Joe Werkmeister)

Shoreham-Wading River senior Ryan Udvadia ran a personal best time in the 1,600 Saturday in Syracuse. (Credit: Joe Werkmeister)

NEW YORK STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS

The greatest challenge in running two distance events at a meet the caliber of the New York State Championships is always the second event.

About 17 hours after running the 3,200, Shoreham-Wading River senior Ryan Udvadia returned to the track Saturday morning at Cicero-North Syracuse High School for the 1,600, an event jam-packed with talented runners.  (more…)

06/06/14 10:15pm
06/06/2014 10:15 PM
Riverhead senior Charles Villa clears 14 feet 6 inches in the pole vault Friday at the state championships in Syracuse. (Credit: Hal Henty)

Riverhead senior Charles Villa clears 14 feet 6 inches in the pole vault Friday at the state championships in Syracuse. (Credit: Hal Henty)

NEW YORK STATE CHAMPIONSHIPS

Charles Villa first began pole vaulting in the spring three years ago as a freshman for Riverhead. Even in a sport that, by its nature, is difficult to begin as a youth, it was still a later start than for many of the top pole vaulters.

“Ever since then I loved it,” Villa said of his introduction to the sport. “I had so much fun.”

On Friday, Villa pole vaulted for the final time representing the Blue Waves. And with it, for now, came the end of an era. For the past several years, the Blue Waves have been flush with talented pole vaulters, from last year’s graduates Jonah Spaeth and Dan Normoyle, to Villa this year.  (more…)

06/05/14 2:00pm
06/05/2014 2:00 PM
A step-by-step view of how Riverhead senior Charles Villa has mastered the pole vault. (Credit: Robert O'Rourk)

A step-by-step view of how Riverhead senior Charles Villa has mastered the pole vault. Click on the photo to enlarge. (Credit: Robert O’Rourk)

When USA Today ran a series in 2005 on the 10 hardest things to do in sports, pole vaulting ranked third. In Riverhead, Charles Villa routinely makes it look easy.

The senior recently set the outdoor school record of 15 feet 1 inch. He finished first at last weekend’s state qualifier by clearing 14-3. On Friday, Villa will compete at the New York State Championships, where he’ll be aiming to set the record even higher. (more…)

06/04/14 2:00pm
06/04/2014 2:00 PM
Competing at states this weekend are Ryan Udvadia (left), Madison Blom and Julianna Cintron. (Credit: Daniel De Mato & Robert O'Rourk)

Competing at states this weekend are Ryan Udvadia (left), Madison Blom and Julianna Cintron. (Credit: Daniel De Mato & Robert O’Rourk)

The New York State Track and Field Championships kick off Friday morning at Cicero-North Syracuse High School. Athletes from Riverhead, Shoreham-Wading River and McGann-Mercy all qualified based on their performance last weekend. (more…)

06/01/14 9:50am
06/01/2014 9:50 AM
Shoreham-Wading River's Jordan Wright races in the 200-meter dash. (Credit: Robert O'Rourk)

Shoreham-Wading River’s Jordan Wright races in the 200-meter dash. (Credit: Robert O’Rourk)

Athletes from Riverhead, Shoreham-Wading River and McGann-Mercy all qualified for next weekend’s track and field state championship.

To qualify, athletes competed Friday and Saturday at Port Jefferson High School in the Section XI Championships.  (more…)

05/29/14 2:23pm
05/29/2014 2:23 PM
Shoreham-Wading River senior Keith Steinbrecher is seeded second in the 3,000-meter steeplechase for the state qualifier. (Credit: Robert O'Rourk)

Shoreham-Wading River senior Keith Steinbrecher is seeded second in the 3,000-meter steeplechase for the state qualifier. (Credit: Robert O’Rourk)

The Section XI track and field state qualifier will be held at Port Jefferson High School Friday and Saturday. The winner of each event earns a spot at the state meet, as well as the second-place finisher who has posted the qualifying standard. One athlete from Division II also qualifies in each event. (more…)

05/24/14 1:00pm
05/24/2014 1:00 PM
Shoreham-Wading River's Matt Gladysz hands off the baton to Connor McAlary in the 4 x 800 relay Friday. (Credit: Robert O'Rourk)

Shoreham-Wading River’s Matt Gladysz hands off the baton to Connor McAlary in the 4 x 800 relay Friday. (Credit: Robert O’Rourk)

Reflecting back on his running career, Shoreham-Wading River coach Bob Syzmanski described the steeplechase as the “toughest event I’ve ever done.”

Considering the length of the race (3,000 meters), and obstacles (a water pit included!), it’s no surprise Shoreham senior Keith Steinbrecher agrees with his coach on that assessment.  (more…)

05/23/14 8:58pm
05/23/2014 8:58 PM
Riverhead sophomore Zikel Riddick jumped 20-11 1/4 in the long jump Friday at the Division II Championship. (Credit: Robert O'Rourk)

Riverhead sophomore Zikel Riddick jumped 20-11 1/4 in the long jump Friday at the Division II Championship. (Credit: Robert O’Rourk)

SECTION XI DIVISION CHAMPIONSHIPS

Charles Villa doesn’t measure his success by the heights he clears in the pole vault. Rather, the Riverhead senior judges himself by the pole he uses to vault.

“I set goals in poles,” he said. “Because I know the height will come. It’s there. I just got to get on the right pole with the right steps.”  (more…)