Meyers hurdler Dunell takes 2 gold medals at D2 2A boys track championships

By Paul Sokoloski - [email protected]
Holy Redeemer’s Bryce Zapusek, front, accepts the baton from Scott Williams to begin the second leg of the Royals’ gold medal District 2 Class 2A boys 3,200-meter relay run at Scranton Memorial Stadium on Thursday. - Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader
GAR’s Curtis Smith was all smiles standing at the top of the podium after his surprise victory in the District 2 Class 2A boys high jump. - Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader
Meyers junior Nazir Dunell, left, clears a hurdle ahead of teammate Janssen Wilborn in the finals of the District 2 Class 2A boys 110-meter hurdles at Scranton Memorial Stadium on Thursday. Dunell swept both hurdles events to leave with a double gold, giving him three District 2 hurdles championships in two years. - Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader

SCRANTON — Running four speed events within the span of 75 minutes of the District 2 finals proved a little too much for Nazir Dunell to overcome.

That gauntlet was about the only thing he couldn’t clear all day.

Dunell breezed to victory in both hurdles events Thursday, continuing a Meyers tradition of winning District 2 hurdles championships while leading a steady stream of medals for the Wyoming Valley Conference during the boys Class 2A Championships at Scranton Memorial Stadium.

“Those are the two events I plan to run in states,” Dunell said of his gold medals in the 110 and 300 hurdles. “I’m satisfied.”

More like exhausted.

The Meyers junior cruised to victory in the 110 hurdles with a time of 15.24 to easily win by 24-hundredths of a second, but then had to come right back for the finals of the 100 dash less than 10 minutes later. Dunell was also favored in that event, but wound up with a fourth-place district medal.

“When I ran the 100, I was tired from the 110 hurdles,” Dunell said. “I still got fourth, that’s good enough.”

But the back-to-back sprints down the track were enough to make Dunell pull out of the 400 relay, which came just over a half-hour after Dunell’s 100 dash. Without him, a Meyers team that was seeded first in the 400 finished 12th.

“I couldn’t run the four-by-one, with how tired I was,” Dunell said. “It was very difficult. I wanted to get ready for the 300 (hurdles) and concentrate on that.”

Dunell finished first there, taking the lead midway through the race with a quick burst and never giving it back. He wound up with a winning time of 41.21, well ahead of the 41.85 time of Lake-Lehman’s silver medalist Floyd McRoy.

His trips to the top of the district medal stand continued a string of first-place success the Mohawks have established in recent years.

Former Meyers star Raheem Twyman won both hurdles events in 2016 and Dunell picked up the torch by winning the District 2 Class 2A hurdles last year, while his teammate Janssen Wilborn finished second in that 2017 event.

“It is a tradition,” said Dunell, who was presented his winning 300 hurdles medal by his brother, Zahir Dunell, a former District 2 gold medalist who ran with Twyman on the 2015 PIAA gold medal 400 relay team. “When Raheem was here, he was always here to help me and Janssen Wilborn has been helping me and pushing me. There’s a lot of pride in the hurdles.”

His Meyers teammate Najese Hood jumped his way to the top of the medal stand by hitting a distance of 21-2.25 in the long jump to edge favored Meyers jumper Tyler Thomas. Thomas got a gold medal of his own when he won the triple jump, where he was also favored, at 44-8.50.

The Holy Redeemer boys 3,200 relay team defended its District 2 gold medal from a year ago, when returning veterans Dominic Capaci and Lukas Volpetti joined Scott Williams and Bryce Zapusek for gold with a time of 8:19.71. Volpetti became what is believed to be the first runner in Redeemer’s 11-year history to win four district medals while taking fifth place in the 800 and 1,600 runs and as part of the 1,600 relay.

And once again, GAR pulled off a delightful district surprise.

Sophomore jumper Curtis Smith, a No. 3 seed entering the championships, hit new heights by clearing 6 feet in the high jump to grab a gold medal in that event, a year after graduated GAR speedster Emmanuel Edoukou pulled off a stunning victory in the 100 dash.

Smith’s previous best in the high jump was 5-10.

“That’s my highest,” a beaming Smith said. “I kind of took an hour and a half to myself, having the thought process of having the determination to win. I just had a thought process of clearing six feet. And if somebody beats that, I’ve just got to put in more effort.”

DISTRICT 2 CLASS 2A BOYS

TRACK CHAMPIONSHIPS

TEAM STANDINGS

1. Lakeland (Lake), 102; 2. Western Wayne (WW), 71; 3. Montrose (Mon), 62; 4. Meyers (Mey), 55; 5. Lake-Lehman (LL), 47; 6. Holy Redeemer (HR), 40; 7. Dunmore (Dun), 39; 8. Hanover Area (Han), 38; 9. Mid Valley (Mid), 37; 10. Riverside (River), 34; 11. Holy Cross (HC), 34; 12. GAR, 25; 13. Northwest (NW), 24; 14. Elk Lake (Elk), 22; 15. Susquehanna (Sus), 20; 16. Lackawanna Trail (LT) 17; 17. Carbondale (Carb), 12; 18. MMI Prep (MMI), 3; 19. Blue Ridge (Blue), 2.

3,200 relay — 1. HR (Dominic Capaci, Lukas Volpetti, Scott Williams, Bryce Zapusek), 8:19; 2. WW (VBrandon O’Sullivan, Gary Geiniz, Leonard Johnson, Jacob Pasake); 3. Lake (John Noldy, James Lewis, Matt McGowan, Noah Chup); 4. Mid (Colin Scherer, Travis Finkler, Josh Vituszynski, Sebastian Brudnicki); 5. Mey (Kaleb Hanson-Richart, Kevin Dessoye, Keegan Brewster, Ryan Judge); 6. LL (Chandler Longstreth, Nathan Salus, Michael Nastasiak, Nate Labar); 7. Mon (Nick Coy, Damien Riley, Nick Summerville, Colin Spellman); 8. HC (Bryce Hughes, Thomas Lee, Doug Walsh, Kevin Jumper). 110 hurdles — 1. Nazir Dunell (Mey), 15.24; 2. Mark Rinaldi (Dun), 14.48, SQS; 3. Jacob Frazier (Lak); 4. Collin Chidester (Mon); 5. Janssen Wilborn (Mey); 6. Daymond Kovaly (LL); 7. Robert Romanowski (Lake); 8. Dakota Moyle (LT). 100 — 1. Cyril Babcanec (Lake); 2. Brennan Gilhool (Mon); 3. Chance Olsewski (Carb); 4. Nazir Dunell (Mey); 5. Casey Kaminski (LL); 6. Christian Chakiris (Mid); 7. Anthony Blake (GAR); 8. Josh Charles (HC). 1,600 — 1. Andrew Healey (HC) 4:24.4; 2. Brandon Curley (Mon), 4:28.73, SQS; 3. Liam Mead (Mon); 4. Jacob Pasake (WW); 5. Lukas Volpetti (HR); 6. Josh Vituyszynski (Mid); 7. Gavin Beck (River); 8. Paris Alunni (Dun). 400 — 1. Cyril Babcanec (Lake), 49.80; 2. Cody Oswald (Elk); 3. Eduardo Quezada (Han); 4. Mike Henry (Mon); 5. Thomas Pidgeon (Lake); 6. Chris Banas (HR); 7. Conor O’Brien (LL); 8. Gary Geinitz (WW). 400 relay — 1. Lake (Billy Good, Tyler Prudente, Jacob Snipes, Brandon Wentovich), 44l58; GAR (Anthony Blake, Tyrone Qualls, Kaden Taylor, Kalil White); 3. WW (Kobe Sauter, Johnny Barcarola, Dylan Murphey Walck, Caleb Brungard); 4. LL ((Matt Sczyrek, Casey Kaminski, Daymond Kovaly, Floyd McRoy); 5. River (Nick Palonis, Brayden Theil, Tom Gilmartin, James Daiz); 6. Mon (John Herman, Tyler Dovin, Henry Rogers, Brennan Gilhool); 7. LT (Jeff Resto-Medina, Miguel Ella, Luke Baldwin, Dakota Moyle); i. Mid (Kenny Riveras, James Goetz, Travis Finkler, Christian Chakiris). 300 hurdles — 1. Nazir Dunell (Mey) 41.21; 2. Floyd McRoy (LL); 3. Logan Bednash (Lake); 4. Dakota Moyle (LT); 5. Joe Ciaccia (LL); 6. Jacob Frazier (Lake); 7. Brandon O’Sullivan (WW); 8. Daymond Kovaly (LL). 800 — 1. Sebastian Brudnicki (Mid) 1:59.82; 2. Riley Newman (LL); 3. Dominic Capaci (HR); 4. Jacob Pasake (WW); 5. Lukas Volpetti (HR); 6. Jack Malay (MMI); 7. Brandon Curley (Mon); 8. Liam Mead (Mon). 200 — 1. Cyril Babcanec (Lake), 22.61; 2. Brennan Gilhool (Mon); 3. Cody Oswald (Elk); 4. Chance Olsewski (Carb); 5. Christian Chakiris (Mid); 6. Brandon Wentovich (Lake); 7. Chris Banas (HR); 8. Eduardo Quezada (Han). 3,200 — 1. Andrew Healey (HC), 9:50.91; 2. Peyton Jones (Elk); 3. Bryce Zapusek (HR); 4. Jacob Pasake (WW); 5. Zach Reeves (Lake); 6. Colin Spellman (Mon); 7. Max Brewer (Mon); 8. George Strish (HR). 1,600 relay — 1. Lake (Jacob Frazier, Thomas Pidgeon, Logan Bednash, Cyril Babcanec) 3:28.18; 2. WW (Gary Geinitz, Caleb Brungard, Brandon O’Sullivan, Johnny Barcarola) 3:29.34, SQS; 3. LL (Floyd McRoy, Conor O’Brien, Nathan Salus, Riley Newman); 4. Mon (Brennan Gilhool, Evan Snyder, Mike Henry, Henry Rogers); 5. HR (Chris Banas, Dominic Capaci, Lukas Volpetti, Scott Williams); 6. Mid (Travis Finkler, John Piorkowski, Colin Scherer, Sebastian Brudnicki); 7. Mey (Joevanny Martinez, Angel Rodriguez, Kevin Dessoye, Janssen Wilborn); 8. Dun (Gavin Darcy, Nathan Fangio, Mark Rinaldi, Greg McDade).

High jump — 1. Curtis Smith (GAR) 6-0; 2. Jakub Tomczyk (Sus); 3. Tom Gilmartin (River); T-4. Caleb Brungard (WW); T-4. Canyon Stone (Sus); T-4. Bryce Collins (River); 7. Evan Snyder (Mon); 8. Casey Kaminski (LL). Pole vault — 1. Ethan Sorber (NW) 13-0; 2. Teddy Groncki (HC). Long jump — 1. Najese Hood (Mey) 21-2.25; 2. Tyler Thomas (Han); 3. Johnny Barcarola (WW); 4. Nathan Fangio (Dun); 5. Jacob Frazier (Lake); 6. Mason Deakin (Sus); 7. Kendall Brewster (Mey); 8. Matt Saxe (NW). Triple jump — 1. Tyler Thomas (Han) 44-8.50; 2. Najese Hood (Mey); 3. Nathan Fangio (Dun); 4. Kaden Taylor (GAR); 5. Tristan Megivern (Sus); 6. Alec Jones (LT); 7. Ryan Mills (Blue); 8. Mason Deakin (Sus). Shot put — 1. King Rose (River) 49-10.50; 2. Sal Gurnari (Han); 3. Shawn Jones (LT); 4. Gavin Darcy (Dun); 5. CJ Dippre (Lake); 6. Matt Stankiewicz (Mid); 7. Ed Sledzinski (WW); 8. Jacob Rasimovich (HC). Discus — 1. CJ Dippre (Lake) 148-6; 2. King Rose (River) 148-2, SQS; 3. Evan Coons (WW); 4. Matt Stankiewicz (Mid); 5. Cole Fuller (WW); 6. Jack McAllister (WW); 7. TJ Meehan (LL); 8. Sal Gurnari (Han). Javelin — 1. Gavin Darcy (Dun), 185-9; 2. Matt Saxe (NW); 3. Dylan Murphy Walc (WW); 4. Colton Babcock (NW); 5. Aaron Hummer (Han); 6. Tyler Overholtz (Dun); 7. Maverick Tims (Mon); 8. Adam Rossetti (Carb).

SQS – State Qualifier.

Note: District 2 champion automatically qualifies for PIAA championships, except in pole vault.

Holy Redeemer’s Bryce Zapusek, front, accepts the baton from Scott Williams to begin the second leg of the Royals’ gold medal District 2 Class 2A boys 3,200-meter relay run at Scranton Memorial Stadium on Thursday.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/web1_TTL051818D2-2ATrack_4.jpgHoly Redeemer’s Bryce Zapusek, front, accepts the baton from Scott Williams to begin the second leg of the Royals’ gold medal District 2 Class 2A boys 3,200-meter relay run at Scranton Memorial Stadium on Thursday. Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader

GAR’s Curtis Smith was all smiles standing at the top of the podium after his surprise victory in the District 2 Class 2A boys high jump.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/web1_TTL051818D2-2ATrack_5.jpgGAR’s Curtis Smith was all smiles standing at the top of the podium after his surprise victory in the District 2 Class 2A boys high jump. Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader

Meyers junior Nazir Dunell, left, clears a hurdle ahead of teammate Janssen Wilborn in the finals of the District 2 Class 2A boys 110-meter hurdles at Scranton Memorial Stadium on Thursday. Dunell swept both hurdles events to leave with a double gold, giving him three District 2 hurdles championships in two years.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/web1_TTL051818D2-2ATrack_1.jpgMeyers junior Nazir Dunell, left, clears a hurdle ahead of teammate Janssen Wilborn in the finals of the District 2 Class 2A boys 110-meter hurdles at Scranton Memorial Stadium on Thursday. Dunell swept both hurdles events to leave with a double gold, giving him three District 2 hurdles championships in two years. Bill Tarutis | For Times Leader
Meyers junior Dunell sweeps gold in District 2 hurdles events

By Paul Sokoloski

[email protected]

Reach Paul Sokoloski at 570-991-6392 or on Twitter @TLPaulSokoloski

Reach Paul Sokoloski at 570-991-6392 or on Twitter @TLPaulSokoloski