Individual and team glory will be on the line for the state’s track and field stars on Saturday and Monday in state championship meets in Lewiston and Gorham.
The Class B teams will compete at Bates College on Saturday starting at 10 a.m. while the Class A schools will hold their meet at the University of Southern Maine on Monday, beginning at noon.
As far as PVC-Eastern Maine Indoor Track League teams go, Bangor, Brewer and Hampden Academy will join their Class A brethren at USM while the rest of the league’s teams will head to Bates.
The Class B meet will feature one of the best distance runners in New England in Mount Desert Island senior Tia Tardy, who swept all three distance races at the EMITL championship meet last week.
The Bucknell University-bound Tardy will have a chance to do so again on Saturday, as she is the top seed in the mile,, the 800 and is the No. 3 runner in the 2-mile.
Tardy’s seasonal best in the mile is 5 minutes, 2.81 seconds, and she’ll be challenging the Class B state record of 5:00.31 set in 2013 by Bethanie Brown of Waterville, now starring at Iowa State University.
Tardy is seeded at 2:18.00 in the 800, just off the state mark of 2:15.28, which Greely of Cumberland Center’s Abby Chipman has held since 2003.
Tardy’s MDI teammate, sprinter Ashley Anderson, is the top seed in all three sprinting events (55 dash, 400, 200).
Other local athletes to watch out for in the girls’ meet include Oliviah Damboise of Old Town (jumps), Kylie Nelson of Belfast (pole vault) and Katherine O’Brien of Orono (jumps).
In the boys’ meet, Washington Academy of East Machias speedster Micahiah Robinson will be looking a big day in the 200 and 400 dashes, in which he is the top seed.
Robinson is coming off a great EMITL championship meet in which he won both the 200 and the 400.
John Hassett of George Stevens Academy in Blue Hill, who narrowly missed setting a new EMITL record in the 800 last weekend, is the top seed in that event, while Orono’s Jacob Fandel is the No. 2 man.
Zach Dyer of Belfast is the top seed in the shot put and has thrown 45-1.50.
Two of the state’s best shot putters will be on display in Class A in Austin Lufkin of Brewer and Daija Misler of Hampden Academy.
Misler has a toss of 41-1 to her credit this season while Lufkin constantly rewrote the EMITL record books en route to a personal best and league record of 61.5.25.
The Class A state schoolboy record of 59-10 (Ed Bogdanovich, South Portland) has stood for 40 years (1977), and Lufkin will have a great chance to set one more record this season.
Another EMITL record-holder, Bangor pole vaulter Rihan Smallwood, is favored in that event having cleared 11 feet this season. She is also the defending Class A state champ in the pole vault.
Other local individuals to watch out for in Class A include Hampden’s Christie Woodside in the long jump, Brewer’s Lia Johnson in the 55 dash, Hampden’s Paul Casavant in the 2-mile, Cayd Wortman of Brewer in the hurdles and EMITL pole vault recorder holder Johann Bradley in the pole vault.