Greyhounds making up for lost time

NAUGATUCK — The winter weather has played havoc with the Naugatuck indoor boys and girls track teams’ schedules, leading to several events being postponed. Just after the season got underway, the Greyhounds missed out on competing at the Hillhouse Invitational, the Winter Relays and the Jack Long Invitational.

“Unfortunately due to the weather cancelling three of our five events the development of the team has been slow,” Naugatuck head coach Ralph Roper said. “We have a lot of new athletes, and it’s always a learning process to see where they can fit in to maximize their efforts and support the team.”

The weather certainly hasn’t helped the development of the team, but practicing at the former General DataComm building on Rubber Avenue has been beneficial.

“We don’t have to spend so much time setting everything up and taking it down,” Roper said. “We can just leave the mats and the hurdles up, and just go to practice.”

Naugatuck has made strides despite the weather as several athletes have qualified for the Class L state meet.

Zach Koslosky and Aren Seeger have qualified in the 55 meter hurdles with times of 8.94 and 7.99, respectively. Seeger has also qualified in the 300 meters in 36.48.

Kosolsky qualified in the pole vault with a jump of 11 feet, and Nick Airall qualified for the high jump with a leap of 5 feet, 8 inches.

Ben Healy has also qualified in two events, the high jump (5-8) and the long jump (19-5).

The boys 4×200 relay squad of Airall, Seeger, Kosolosky and Derek Sampaio has qualified with a time of 1:38.21.

Makayla Teixeira has led the girls squad and has qualified for states in the 55 hurdles (9.86). Brianna Soubannarath (10.21) and Alyssa Zarrella (10.03) will join Teixeira at states in the 55 hurdles.

The girls 4×200 relay team of Julia Dudek, Brianna Haye, Rachel Huculak and Loren Quarles has posted a time of 2:01.37, just off the pace of the 2:00.00 qualifying mark.

“We do have some athletes that are starting to shine,” Roper said. “I’m excited about what this team is going to look like heading into championship time. We do have a lot of potential, and over the next few weeks we are going to see that develop even further.”

Roper is hoping the Greyhounds can add a few more athletes from the distance runs to the list that has qualified for states to bolster the team’s depth for the postseason.

“We don’t have the horses that we’ve had in the past with regards to dominating the distance events,” Roper said. “But the athletes who are making the commitment and attending practice on a consistent basis are getting better and giving us the pieces to build a successful team for the future.”

Naugatuck is scheduled to compete at this weekend’s McReavy Invitational at Wesleyan University. The Greyhounds will compete at the Yale Classic next week.