The Bishop Shanahan boys’ indoor track team finished its season with a bang, capturing first place at the Pennsylvania Track & Field Coaches Association Boys’ Indoor State Championship Feb. 25 at Penn State University.
The Eagles soared at States, posting some of the fastest times in Pennsylvania this season. Many of those clockings also ranked among the top 10 nationally as well.
“We went hard throughout the [regular] season, but we were really focused on States,” said Shanahan senior Nate Alleyne, who won the 400-meter dash and placed third at the 200-meter dash. “As the [state] meet progressed, our motivation to finish first just kept building – we really had momentum.”
Shanahan posted 51 points to place first, ahead of second-place Carlisle (41) and third-place Germantown Academy (28).
Alleyne posted a winning time of 48.21 in the 400-meter dash to edge Miles Green of St. Joseph’s Prep (48.24), as both runners posted PRs. Alleyne’s school-record time was not only the fastest in Pennsylvania this season, but ranked No. 8 nationally.
“I had competed against [Green] before,” said Alleyne. “On the first bend, we were neck-and-neck; in fact, we were neck-and-neck pretty much the entire race. But he was running on the outside lane, so he had a [slightly] longer run than I did.
“I had competed against him before, beat him by a larger margin earlier in the season. I was surprised he was so close, and was relieved when the race was over and I won.”
After winning the 400-meter run, Alleyne posted a time of 21.82 in the 200-meter run, which placed him third, was the seventh-fastest time in Pennsylvania in 2017, and was a U.S. National Championship Qualifier.
“Nate’s win in the 400 was really our beachhead,” said Shanahan head coach Pete Uhlman. “Nate came into the race actually seeded third, but we felt that he had a real opportunity to win the race. Nate’s performance was a statement to his teammates, and likely everyone else in the arena, that we were determined to bring a title home to Shanahan.”
That determination was on display a short time later as Shanahan junior Josh Hoey finished first in the 800-meter run, crossing the finish line in a personal best of 1:52.21, the fastest 800-meter run all year in Pennsylvania.
“Going into States, I knew I was in shape to do a PR,” said Hoey. “I knew it was going to be a tight race, with lots of [good] competitors, and in an indoor race, you can’t go out at the beginning too hard with all of the runners around you. So I went out conservative, and made my finishing kick with 200 meters to go. At that point, the leader was about 25 meters ahead.”
Hoey, a two-time Ches-Mont cross-country champion, said, “My older brother Jaxson, who runs for Penn State, has been a big help to me. He called me up before [States], encouraged me, and gave me several tips. He said to stay true to myself during the race, to run the race I had planned out, and not to react to other people’s moves.”
Hoey and Alleyne ran the final two legs of Shanahan’s 4×400 relay team that finished first in the meet’s final event. Carlisle, which finished second to Shanahan at States, was trailing the Eagles by a small margin going into the final event.
“Running as a team in the 4×400 was the cherry on the top of the sundae,” said Hoey, who ran the third leg of the relay. “We knew that Carlisle didn’t have a particularly strong 4×400 team, but we wanted to finish as strongly as we could.
“When I got the baton, we were third or fourth, but I kicked by one or two people with 50 meters to go. Then Nate anchored, and finished it up for us, getting us into first place.”
The Eagles’ 4×400 relay team of Alleyne, Hoey, Keegan Hughes and Logan Yoquinto posted a school-record clocking of 3:21.80, which is the fastest time in Pennsylvania for 2017, and ranks 11th nationally.
“That’s a pretty good squad to rest your fate in,” a relieved Uhlman jokingly said. “We’ve had some highs and lows this year, but with the meet on the line those are four young men we want carrying the stick.”
Shanahan’s 4×200 relay team of Hughes, Nate Alleyne, Ian Alleyne and Cameron Dowling also finished first, and their school-record clocking of 1:30.19 ranks as the third-fastest time in Pennsylvania and 23rd nationally.
Hughes finished fifth in the 400-meter run with the seventh-fastest time in Pennsylvania, which also was a U.S. National Championship Qualifier.
The Shanahan boys’ indoor track team has enjoyed an outstanding 2016-17 season, from start to finish. Its sprint medley team of quartet of Hughes, Yoquinto, Dowling and Nate Alleyne have posted the fastest time in Pennsylvania in 2017 and ninth nationally; Hoey has posted the second-fastest time in the mile run in Pennsylvania in 2017, and his time was a U.S. National Championship Qualifier; and Hughes and Nate Alleyne have each posted among the top four times in Pennsylvania this year in the 300-meter run.
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