A promising season for Saugerties track team

Ethan Pietrzak (photo by Josh Arsenault)

The Saugerties High School varsity boys’ and girls’ track and field teams have raced out of the starters’ blocks this season, holding their own at Kingston High School’s 13th annual Tiger Relays over the weekend, followed by a clean sweep over visiting non-league opponent Spackenkill on Tuesday afternoon. 

On the girls’ side, the Sawyers overwhelmed Spackenkill 112-23, with Mikaylin Williams (100, 11.7), Molly Daggett (200, 29.3), Renee Baldwin (400, 65.2 and 800, 2:57), Chloe Hanson (3000, 12.30), Hilary Mulford (100 hurdles, 18.6), Erin Dudzic (high jump, 4-8), Lexi McCabe (shot put, 30-5 and discus, 84-2) and Sugar Hart (pole vault, 6-6) all placing first. The team’s 1,600 (4:38) and 3,200 (12:40.3) relay teams also excelled. 

The boys also won, but by a slimmer margin, outpacing Spackenkill 81-59. Christian Schlosser (110 hurdles, 18.9), Matt Morgan (400 hurdles, 64.6), Joe Hartrum (shot put, 34-1.25), Albert Nova (discus, 113-10) and Jeremy Cornelison (pole vault, 8-0) kept the Sawyers ahead of a Spackenkill team that was quicker in the sprints. Saugerties also turned in a stellar showing in the 1600 relay (3:48). 


Sawyer girls’ coach Ted Suttmeier said he has a simple approach to identifying individual goals and helping his athletes achieve them. 

“After their first competition, I have the team write down their individual goals,” said Suttmeier. “In doing that, it helps us help them to both focus on their training and allows us to put them in competitions to best achieve their goals. It is not uncommon for an athlete to include a group or relay goal. As for the team goal as a coach, we work with the athletes we have and if we can get them to achieve their best and at times stretch themselves the team results will follow. We are in a very competitive league and section, so they will have plenty of opportunities to compete against others both whether they are experienced and novice competitors.” 

Suttmeier said the Sawyers were really hitting their stride. 

“At this point of the season we see the most progress,” he said. “If they have been working and stayed healthy, this is the time of year when distances increase and times go down. Many of the team has met goals they set earlier in the year and others are working hard to achieve their goals. We are getting into the championship meets now and we look forward to having them peak in their events.”

Sawyer boys’ coach Stephen Buonfiglio said that the team’s season was designed to get the most out of May. “Our teams have done well of late,” he said. “Much improvement and some nice performances against quality competition. We stress that the early meets are really glorified practices as we look to have our best times and distances at the end of the season.”

That momentum yielded results at the Tiger Relays held at Dietz Stadium last Saturday, April 28. Sawyer athletes fared well in a crowded field of 19 high schools, with some significantly larger than Saugerties High. 

Hanson’s second-place finish in the 1,500 (4:57.66) was the best individual performance at the varsity level, while Dudzic excelled in the high jump, winning the frosh/soph competition.

On the boys’ side, Morgan took top honors in the frosh/soph steeple, while Josh Arsenault (5th, javelin, 111-8), Nick Smith (7th, high jump, 5-6), Nova (7th, discus, 112-11) and Felix Gieler (8th, javelin, 105-0) all performed well. The spring medley relay team of Ethan Pietrzak, Dan MacIsaac, Evan Sullivan and Morgan placed second as well. 

Next up for the Sawyers is a visit from league opponent Red Hook next Tuesday, May 8, with Mid-Hudson Athletic League and Section IX meets scheduled for later in the month. Suttmeier said the Sawyers will fare well as long as they’re committed to putting in the work. 

“There are always challenges with training versus overtraining as well as avoiding injuries,” the coach said. “We all want to compete well in May with the league meet on the 19th followed by the Section IX meet …. We always stress commitment as those who work see the most improvement.  Many events are very technical and take a lot of repetition in training and hours of work. It’s been a great group to work with this year, and they have been very supportive of each other and have put in some good workouts.”