Koletsky wins 800, teams with Goodwin, Taylor, McCroy to win 4x800 relay crown
The Cambridge-South Dorchester High School indoor track 4x800 relay team won the Class 1A state championship Monday. Feb 20. The team features Matt Koletsky, left, Trevor Goodwin, Carson Taylor and Connor McCroy. Koletsky also won an individual state title in the 800. For the story,
— Presidents’ Day 2017 will be remembered fondly by Matt Koletsky and his fellow Viking runners.
Koletsky anchored CambridgeSouth Dorchester High’s winning boys’ 4x800-meter relay Monday afternoon and later raced to an individual championship in the 800 meters to highlight the Mid-Shore showing at the Class 1A state indoor track and field championships at the Prince George’s Sports & Learning Complex.
Koletsky overtook and held off a challenge by Fairmont Heights’ Tyreke Thompson on the final straightaway as the Vikings won the 4x800 relay with a time of 8 minutes, 32.34 seconds. Trevor Goodwin, Carson Taylor, and Connor McCroy teamed with Koletsky on the championship relay. Fairmont Heights, which had the fastest seed time, finished second by 39 hundredths of a second.
The Vikings bested their seed time by nearly 45 seconds, benefiting from the return on an injured relay member.
“I think the win was bigger for all of us than it normally would be because this is our first year of indoor track,” Koletsky said. “And it took a lot, because a lot of people didn’t want us to have a team. So it meant more to us than anything. I was a little worried. We were in second place by a big margin. Carson Taylor had gotten the baton and he brought us back some, and I think the kid who was ahead of me, he was probably 10 meters ahead, just looking from behind, I knew I was coming back on him. I had so much adrenalin pumping, I was getting it. I was getting it done.”
“It was awesome,” Vikings boys head coach John Shaw said. “The kids ran how we knew that they could. They ran how they did towards the beginning of the season before one of our sophomores was out with a broken toe. He got cleared last week and he ran how he knew he should and they were able to pull it off. Matt Koletsky did a great job closing in the end. That was their best time, according to my clock, by four seconds. It was a four-second PR (personal record) on the season. It was a great day.”
Without McCroy in the relay due to the injury, the Vikings weren’t able to win either a Bayside Conference or 1A East Regional title in the 4x800. Zhihong Pang filled in and ran well enough for the Vikings to qualify for the states. Fairmont Heights had won the East Region race with a time of 8:42.18.
Koletsky, a senior, later continued his successful afternoon by winning the 800 with a time of 2:03.67, nipping Boonsboro’s Donovan McClellan (2:03.99) by 32 hundredths of a second. Thompson finished a close third (2:04.08). Koletsky had finished second in the regional meet, beaten by Thompson by 9 hundredths of a second.
Cambridge-SD’s boys placed fifth overall with 30 team points, the highest team finish and total points of Mid-Shore schools competing in the 1A and 2A meets. Pang placed fifth in the pole vault with a height of 11 feet on his second attempt. Taylor Pohl placed seventh in the boys’ shot put with a distance of 37 feet, 2 inches. Janee Qualies finished seventh in the girls’ 500 with a time of 1:27.71. Taylor took sixth in the 1,600 (5:15.01).
Cambridge-South Dorchester’s Matt Koletsky, left, sprints to the finish line while anchoring the Vikings’ state championship 4x800-meter relay Monday afternoon at the Prince George’s Sports & Learning Center in Landover.