It’s been a season of accomplishment already for the Merion Mercy track and field team, as the Golden Bears eye the league championship meet just over a week away.
Senior Simone Waheed, a Colby College commit, and freshman Amira Wardlaw lead the way as they have finished first and second, respectively, in the 100-meter dash in all of the Association of Catholic Academies (AACA) regular-season meets this season. Waheed ran a season-best mark of 13.17 at the league meet on April 12, while Wardlaw has literally raced onto the MMA track scene, registering a career-best time of 13.48 at the AACA league meet on April 19th.
Showing their skill extends past the 100m, Waheed and Wardlaw claimed the top two spots in the 200m as well, at the most recent league meet.
Waheed, who finished second in the 100m at last season’s championship meet, looks poised to finish her outstanding MMA career with more hardware.
Merion’s standout speed also extends to the 4x100 relay which has gone undefeated in league competition to date. Senior Maggie Iannone and sophomore Ayanna Jones join forces with Waheed and Wardlaw to form this outstanding quartet that represented MMA at the Penn Relays last week.
Also participating at the Penn Relays was the 4x400 squad of juniors Paige Tavares and Molly Mangano, senior Grace Siorek, and freshman Chiarra Mazza who raced to a second-place finish in the 4x400 at the last league competition.
Tavares registered a team-best individual time of 1:04.44 in the 400m at the Sterling Hoffman Invitational in mid-April.
Tavares’ speed has also been on display in the 800m throughout the season as she currently tops the league performance list in the event. Dropping her time by five seconds at the last league meet, Tavares took first in 2:27.54.
Distinguishing herself as one of the top freshmen in the league, Mazza finished in third place at that same league meet on April 19th with a time of 2:43.77.
Senior Marianne Cheely, who ran to a runner-up finish at the AACA cross country meet in the fall, extended Merion’s standout performances to the distance events as she crossed the line first in the 1600m with a time of 5:46.12 on April 19th.
The distance, sprinter, hurdler and jumps groups have made big improvements this season in every league meet, as well as their first invitational, winning 14 medals in total. Every relay of the 4x100, 4x400, and 4x800 also earned medals at the Sterling Hoffman Invite.
Boasting its largest squad in a number of years, with close to 70 members strong, the track and field program is truly the sum of its parts.
One final league regular-season tune-up awaits this week before the Golden Bears focus on the league championship meet on May 9th.
The coaches are excited going into the championship portion of the season to see what else this team will accomplish.
- Track & field