Tri-Valley Meet One to
By Frank Rizzo
GRAHAMSVILLE — May 26, 2000 -- On May 16, the Tri-Valley girls’ track team winning
streak was in danger when it hosted Sullivan West.
Since May, 1985, the Lady Bears had won 73 consecutive Western Sullivan
League dual meets, but now needed a win in the final event of the meet
— the 1600 relay — against SW to keep the streak alive.
Heading into the relay, the hosts held a slight 69-67 lead, and whoever
won the race would gain all five points in the event.
There was a bit of drama, too, because T-V’s Kelsi Lockhart —
normally the strong leadoff leg — had been sick and throwing up
before the race.
T-V girls’ coach Missy Iatauro decided to put Danielle Poley, her
anchor, on the leadoff spot and save Lockhart for the third leg.
Tri-Valley won the race when Heather Iatauro took the baton from Poley
and ran a 1:03.3 leg put distance between her and SW’s Kate McKenna.
Lockhart maintained the lead, and anchor Kristina Mootz was able to
hold SW’s Meaghan Mullally. The respective team times were 4:25.3 to
“It was a wonderful meet, the most exciting one since the one we lost
in ’85,” said Missy Iatauro.
Fifteen years before, Eldred and T-V had vied for WSL track dominance
and the league titleist would be determined by the dual meet, which was
actually run after the league championship meet itself.
Then, as now, a team was awarded two points for every dual meet wins
and one point for every team it beat at the league championship meet
— the squad with the most points wins the overall league title.
That meet also came down to the last event, the 1600 relay. Future
basketball standout Tammi Reiss, then a freshman, helped Eldred take a
big lead with a p.r. 1:03.9. Beth Lindholm and Angie Rios extended the
advantage for the Yellow Jackets, giving anchor Michelle Counts a 30-40
yard cushion against Katie Gallagher.
Counts needed all of it, as Gallagher burned the lanes for a 1:00.9 p.r.
and was nipped by a step at the end.
Last Tuesday’s meet, according to Missy Iatauro, “was the closest
[we’ve come to losing] since 1985. I don’t think any of the kids
have been to a meet as exciting as this. Every kid was excited, and
will remember it.
“It was wonderful,” Iatauro added. “I can go down the list and
everyone contributed. We’re fortunate because our kids do well.”
The next day T-V beat Livingston Manor 92-19 to extend the winning
streak to 75 dual meets.
Last Saturday T-V won the league championship meet to win the title for
the 15th consecutive year.
It will also be the last season, as the WSL is disbanding after this
scholastic year and the teams will move to the Orange County League.
The OCL track alignment for next spring is tentatively scheduled as
Division III Division IV
1. Monticello 1. Fallsburg
2. Cornwall 2. Tri-Valley
3. Goshen 3. Livingston Manor
4. J.S. Burke 4. Roscoe
5. Ellenville 5. Chester
6. Sullivan West 6. Eldred
7. J.I. O’Neill
“We might do fine in the division,” Iatauro noted. “The kids will
have more competition. At some [WSL] meets we don’t run everybody
because we don’t want to run up the score. A good dual meet during
the week will do good for the big meets, it might increase the