Naugatuck’s Onakpoma leaps to title

Fejiro Onakpoma

Fejiro Onakpoma

NEW BRITAIN — The Naugatuck and Woodland track and field teams made their presence felt Monday at the CIAC State Open championships at Willow Brook Park.

The teams didn’t bring their entire contingent of athletes, only the ones who qualified at last week’s CIAC class championships, but both teams were well represented.

Naugatuck senior Fejiro Onakpoma entered Monday’s meet as the top seed in the triple jump, and he didn’t disappoint.

Onakpoma, the two-time Class L champion in the triple jump and the Class L champion this season in the long jump, won the triple jump at the State Open with a career-best jump of distance of 47 feet, 1 ½ inches. The victory qualified Onakpoma for Saturday’s New England championships.

Last season, Onakpoma finished fifth in the triple jump at the state open. Onakpoma also placed 13th in the long jump on Monday with a distance of 20 feet, 5 ¾ inches.

Naugatuck senior Antoine Sistrunk came into the State Open seeded 11th in the triple jump after his fourth-place finish at the Class L meet. On Monday, Sistrunk jumped 44 feet, 3 ¾ inches to take seventh in the event.

The Naugatuck girls were represented by junior Erin Schofield, who was the Class L runner-up in the javelin. Schofield, who was competing in her first State Open, was seeded fifth in the event. She threw for 111 feet, 8 inches, finishing ninth and just 6 inches out of the scoring.

Woodland senior Brandon Clifford finished third at the Class M meet in the triple jump last week and entered the State Open seeded 14th. The Hawks’ leaper finished with a jump of 42 feet, 5 ¼ inches to place 16th on Monday.

Woodland senior Jeff Giusto, who was fifth at the Class M meet in 800 meters, posted a similar time of 1:59.51 on Monday to finish 16th at the State Open.

The Hawks’ foursome of sophomore Matt Luxeder, freshman Edit Krivca and seniors Brian Sardinskas and Giusto finished 26th in the 4×800 with a time of 8:44.69 on Monday. The Woodland relay squad came into the competition ranked 10th after last week’s third-place finish in 8:12.50 at the Class M meet.