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Belot lifts Kellenberg to CHSAA title

Kellenberg's Odrine Belot (r) beats teammate Katie Cavanaugh

Kellenberg's Odrine Belot (r) beats teammate Katie Cavanaugh in the finals of the 55m high hurdles 8:32 - 8: 35. (Feb. 18, 2012) Credit: Joseph D. Sullivan

The Kellenberg girls huddled in the infield, waiting for the news. It was only about five minutes since the meet had officially ended, but the anticipation seemed like forever.

"It felt pretty darn long,'' coach Marty Brown said. "About the time I was waiting for my youngest child to be born.''

When the final score was announced, the Firebirds had something to celebrate.

Odrine Belot set a league record and won two events to lift Kellenberg to its first intersectional track and field title since 2006 Saturday in the CHSAA Intersectional Championship meet at St. Anthony's. The Firebirds took first with 601/2 points. St. Anthony's (551/2) was second and Archbishop Molloy (32) third.

Belot set a CHSAA record in the triple jump with a 39 feet, 23/4 inches on her third jump, breaking the previous record of 38-101/4 set by St. Francis' Nicole Dyson in 1992.

"I'm happy that I've been so consistent all year,'' said Belot, who earned co-most outstanding field performer along with St. John the Baptist's Emma Cleary. "It's helping me get ready for states.''

Belot also won the 55 hurdles (8.32), edging teammate Katie Cavanaugh by .03 seconds.

She wasn't done as she also was on the second-place 4 x 400 team that tied the team score with St. Anthony's at 521/2 points apiece with one relay remaining.

"We all had to work hard,'' Belot said. "Today was about the whole team, not just myself.''

With the meet coming down to the final race, the Friars' 4 x 200 team of Megan Fiedler, Melissa June, Kathryn Mazzuca and Chynna-Monica Chung appeared to finish first and clinch their second straight CHSAA title. But the officials ruled that one of their handoffs occurred outside the zone, disqualifying the team and awarding the win to Kellenberg, which finished in 1:49.86.

"It's always close between us two,'' Belot said. "St. Anthony's is such a great team, and we knew they were going to put up a fight. It was just a great meet.''

Olicia Williams, who won the 600 (1:34.04) and the 300 (40.19) for the Friars, earned most outstanding track performer. Chung also took the 55 (7.40) for St. Anthony's.

Kellenberg's Ashlin Conroy won the 3,000 (10:37.17) and Jazmine Fray the 1,000 (3:05.30).

"You want to be at your best in the championship, and all of our girls were at their best,'' Brown said.

Cleary cleared 11-3 in her final attempt to set a CHSAA pole vault record. Cleary broke her own mark of 11-0, which she set at the Yale Invitational last month.

"My goal all year was to get 11-3,'' she said. "It's awesome to get it at this meet.''

Her record didn't come without some drama as Cleary clipped the bar with her left quad. The bar hopped off the rack, and for a split second, it looked as if it would come crashing down onto the mat.

But the bar fell right back into place, causing the crowd to erupt into cheers.

"I thought I had a good jump, but I knew I hit it a little bit, so I wasn't sure,'' Cleary said. "Having it stay up was just really lucky.''

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