For the Tewksbury High girls track team, senior captains Sarah Hogan and Jess Bridle are like interchangeable parts.
Wherever you plug them in, they make the team go.
On Wednesday, Hogan and Bridle swapped their customary places, with Hogan running the 50-yard dash and Bridle running the 300 meters. Predictably, the results were the same as usual, as Hogan and Bridle each took first place, sparking the TMHS girls to their first dual meet win of the season, 45-41 over Methuen.
"There was no real reason for it," said Tewksbury coach Peter Molloy of the Hogan/Bridle event swap. "We knew they weren't going to lose even if it was the other way around. It wasn't about strategy, it was just flipping them. We just like to give our kids a chance to try something different once in a while."
Hogan ran the dash in 6.4 seconds to take her first win of the season in that event after having won the 300 in both of Tewksbury's first two meets. Bridle won the 300 in 40.3 seconds to take her first win of the season in that event, after having won the 50-yard dash in both of Tewksbury's first two meets.
Senior shot putter Lisetta Jacintho also earned her third straight victory in that event with a toss of 32-feet even. Tewksbury's other event winner was sophomore hurdler Kelly Quigley, who earned her second straight dual meet victory with an 8.2 second clocking in the 50-yard high hurdles.
Ultimately, it was a run of second place finishes that made the difference in this meet, which wasn't decided until sophomores Olivia Boudreau (6:28.3) and Rachel McCabe (6:28.5) took second and third respectively in the mile run. Sophomore Rachael Eatherton also earned three important points with a second place finish in the 1000.
"Olivia (Boudreau) ran like a seven-second PR (personal record) and that's the points that won it for us," Molloy said.
Sophomores Kylie Sedgwick (second) and Erin Morrissey (third) teamed up with Hogan to sweep the 50-yard dash, while junior Jenn Shultz took second behind Bridle in the 300. Senior Matilda Matovu was second in the shot put while Sam McGouldrick (second) and Grace Canavan (third) earned four important points in the two-mile run.
Tewksbury got third place finishes from Alyssa Zurowski in the hurdles and Rebecca Davies in the 600, while Ashley Callahan and Jess Amedee finished in a four-way tie for second in the high jump, earning one point each.
"It's nice ot get a win under our belts," Molloy said. "We had a few kids who didn't run the way we expected them to, so I'm not totally happy with the way we did it, but the end justifies the means."
The Tewksbury girls are now 1-2 in dual meets.
TEWKSBURY BOYS FALL TO 0-3
The Methuen High boys track team had too much talent in the longer races compared to their Tewksbury counterparts, and the Redmen fell to 0-3 on the season with a 49-37 loss.
Tewksbury took first place in only three of the meet's 10 events, as Methuen swept the 600 and won the 100, the mile run, the two-mile and the 4x400-meter relay.
Sophomore hurdler Eddie Matovu got Tewksbury off to a strong start when he combined with Nick Souza and Joe Poli to sweep the 50-yard hurdles. Matovu ran a personal best 6.9 seconds to take his second straight victory in that event.
The Redmen led 15-3 after two events when junior John Fiorello won the shot put with a toss of 45-feet, 4-inches and Christian Taylor, also a junior, took third.
But the only other first place finish TMHS would see on the day came when sophomore Dom Rosado won the high jump at 5-feet, 4-inches, to pull Tewksbury within three points with three events to go. Methuen took first place in those final three events to pull out the win.
"We were hoping for some mistakes on their end so we could sneak in and get the points we needed to win, but they ran well," said TMHS coach Bill Meuse of Methuen. "We ran tough but they ran tough. We just didn't have enough in the distance events."
Tewksbury's distance running crew took second place in each of the meet's three longest events. Cory Thomas was second in the two-mile with Tim Conklin third; Brian Amaral was second in the 1000 and Kip Horahan was second in the mile.
Rosado scored in two events for the third straight meet, taking second in the 50-yard dash before winning the high jump. Khalil Sarraf was third in the dash for Tewksbury.
Roy Felix was third in the 300, Poli took third in the high jump and Brendan Blair took third in the 1000.
Freshman Mike Famigletti also ran a strong race in the mile, taking fourth.
WRESTLING TEAM FALLS TO UNBEATEN CHELMSFORD, 46-30
The Chelmsford High wrestling team showed why it is unbeaten in dual meets so far this season as the Lions pulled out come-from-behind victories in the 182 and 195-pound weight classes to hold off the hard-charging Redmen, 46-30 Wednesday night.
Lowell Holiday Wrestling Tournament 170-pound champion Chris London continued his winning ways, raising his overall record to 16-0 with a first period pin of Chelmsford's Ben Melisi.
Fellow seniors Dan Altavesta and Mike Davidian also won by pinfall as Tewksbury shot out to an 18-4 lead after four weight classes had been contested. Altavesta pinned Chelmsford's Louis Hughes in the first period at 152 pounds and Davidian pinned Doug Calenda in the third period at 160.
But Chelmsford won five of the next six weight classes, three by pinfall and two by forfeit, to go on a 30-6 run that gave the Lions the lead for good.
Sophomores Nick Jansen (220 pounds) and Mike Donovan (120 pounds) were Tewksbury's other two winners. Jansen pinned Chelmsford's Brendan Flaherty in the first round and Donovan won by first round pinfall over Chelmsford's Jake Ahern.
Joe Burger (138) and Brandon McCarthy (145) also wrestled well against highly-regarded Chelmsford opponents in their weight classes.
"The matches at 182 and 195 were huge wins for them," Tewksbury coach Brian Aylward said. "They're a good team. We can't afford not to get 36-40 points against them and expect to win. We fought a lot of good fights but they were a little too polished for us in a couple of weight classes. There's no shame in losing to these guys. That's a strong team."