Sullivan County Democrat
O n l i n e  E d i t i o n National Award-winning, Family-run Newspaper
  SPORTS ARCHIVES Established 1891 Callicoon, New York  
home  |  archives

Tri-Valley Meet One to Remember

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 4:26.8.
“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 follows:
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
8. Liberty
“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 performances.”



top of page  |  home  |  archives