By Larry Moko
Cardinal Newman’s Mark Skerl added a third gold medal to his total on the final day of the OFSAA track and field championships in Guelph.
Competing in the junior boys’ 300m hurdles Saturday, Skerl won the final in 39.19 seconds. That came on the heels of his first-place finishes the day before in the long jump (6.66 metres) and the 100m hurdles (12.95 seconds).
“It was better than I expected,” Skerl said of his 3-for-3 performance at the three-day provincial high school championships. “It was a phenomenal experience.”
In addition to the three gold medals – he won two gold and a silver at OFSAA last year in midget – Skerl shattered the record in the 100m hurdles of 13.31 that had stood for 11 years. It was last held by Gregory MacNeill of London’s Mother Teresa.
“Very impressive,” Skerl’s coach Tom Bereza of the Monte Cristo Track Club said of the Newman Grade 10 student. “I’ve had other coaches talk to me about just how big his 12.95 in the 100 hurdles is. The person whose record he broke is really an established runner.”
In other action involving Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic athletes, Antonio Fricano of the Bishop Tonnos Titans raced to a gold medal in the 800m intellectually impaired division. He out-legged a field of 12 with a time of 2:21.77. Ryan Sorley of the Bishop Ryan Celtics was eighth (2:37.97).
“It felt really great,” said Fricano, who also had the fastest preliminary time.
Fricano held the lead for most of the two laps but was passed briefly by a competitor in the backstretch. “I wanted to take the lead back, so I just sped up and cut in front of him,” Fricano said.
Another victory for the HWCAA came in the 200m dash wheelchair final. Mason Sajder of the St. Jean de Brebeuf Braves took top honours in the three-man field with a time of 54.80 seconds.
Another Tonnos entrant – Tiago Brum – picked up a silver medal in the 800m visually impaired race (2:28.78). Brum also won OFSAA gold at that distance last year.
Other HWCAA results in final events were: Isabella Bauman, St. Mary, sixth, junior girls’ 300m hurdles, 46.70; Rachel Watson, St. Mary, seventh, senior girls’ 400m hurdles, 1:04.32; Jenna Huibers, Bishop Ryan, 12th, midget girls’ discus, 25.88m.
Source: Marnie Jadon