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Staples Relay Takes Down School Mark

A relay team from Staples set a school record in the 4x400 relay at last Saturday's Yale Invitational. Coach Laddie Lawrence believes, however, that the best is yet to come.

The team of Jon Heil, Jack Roche, Sean Gallagher and Raphael Ray ran 3:24.9, breaking the record it set last year. The team finished first in a competition that featured some of the best teams from New England and the Mid-Atlantic states.

"They only had 30 minutes after they ran the 4x200,'' Lawrence said. "If I hadn't run them in that, I expect that they would have gone even faster." George Birch replaced Roche on the 4x200 team, which finished third prior to the 4x400.

Lawrence expected big things from the relay coming into the season. The team won the New England outdoor championships last June, running 3:19:43. "They're getting faster,'' Lawrence said. "They're supposed to do that, so that's a good thing."

Lawrence is hoping to get the relay to run close to 3:10 by the time the national meet rolls around in March. The Wreckers' time is currently 16th in the country, according to a website that tracks track and field. "We haven't even started to do peak training,'' Lawrence said. "We're still doing base work."

The indoor season begins to heat up this weekend with the Fairfield County Interscholastic Athletic Conference indoor championships. Staples will host the Western Division championships at 10 a.m. and the Central Division championships at 4 p.m. Wilton will host the Eastern championships at 10 a.m. The league championship meet is set for Feb. 3 at the New Haven Athletic Center at 4:30 p.m.

"We've got some holes to fill,'' Lawrence said. "We're not as well-rounded as we have been in the past."

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