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Monday, May 30, 2016
Mepham track team blazes ahead
Ron Manfredi/Herald
Junior Toni Simpson helped the Lady Pirates capture the Division 2-A title, finishing second in the 400 meters and contributing to a second-place relay.

Opportunity knocked for Mepham’s Emily Hagerty in the pentathlon at the State Qualifier Track and Field Meet at Freeport High School on May 28-29, and the junior took full advantage, winning the event by 25 points and qualifying for the New York State Public High School Athletic Association Championships in Middletown this Friday and Saturday.

Despite competing in just her third pentathlon, which comprises the 100-meter high hurdles, 800-meter run, long jump, shot put and high jump, the seven-time All-County honoree has already racked up a pair of first-place finishes in the event.

Hagerty’s performance was one of many highlights of a banner campaign for the Mepham girls’ spring program. Led by a number of young but veteran athletes, the Lady Pirates captured the regular season Division 2-A title for the first time in recent memory and will return the bulk of their top performers next season.

“We had a lot of girls scoring points and doing their jobs,” Lady Pirates coach Anthony Serravite said of a roster that numbered 52 competitors. “The whole team has completely come around and knows what it means to work hard and earn everything they’ve gotten.”

Of Hagerty, he said, “She’s one of those student-athletes that comes along [rarely].She’s very strong at a bunch of different events and [the transition to pentathlon] just made sense.

“She’s such a natural athlete, and because of her ability, she was able to push through,” Serravite added. “She’s a very quick learner, and when she knows how to do something, she becomes really good at it.”

Senior Anarita Lynch, a vocal and motivational captain and sprinter, and senior Francesca Ackerman, a jack-of-all trades who can score points in sprints, jumps or even the pole vault, will graduate in June, but there are plenty of key performers ready to keep Mepham moving forward.


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