Fairfield Prep's Alvarado sets record in mile at Dream Invitational
Published 12:26 am, Saturday, May 18, 2013
DANBURY -- It's a track meet custom-made for fast times and record-breaking performances, and there were plenty of both of those at the Danbury High Dream Invitational on Friday night.
Each year, the nationally sanctioned Dream Invitational gathers an elite collection of athletes to showcase their talents in one of a handful of events under the best conditions possible.
No team scores are kept, each athlete competes in only one event and the cool evening air is perfect for running. And the meet is held at a time in the season -- right before the championship meets -- when most runners are beginning to peak. All those ingredients make for some exciting races and blistering paces.
"This is a great way to kick off the championship season," Danbury coach Rob Murray said. "Kids are trying to get ready to finish the last chapter of the outdoor season. Everyone wants to tune up and run fast. And in this environment, kids don't have a lot of pressure because there are no team points on the line and there are no doubles or triples that kids have to do for team points."
It's sort of like the track and field version of Friday Night Lights.
And the stars certainly came out to shine.
"I was pretty happy," Healey said. "It was me and just one other kid, and we were just working together and trying to run as fast as possible. It was a few seconds off of (a national qualifying time), which was my goal, but it was still a good race."
Fairfield Prep's Adam Vare won the 800 in 1:54.81, followed by Logan Ross of Shepaug in 1:56.56 and fellow Jesuit James Mulliken in 1:56.58.
Fairfield Prep's Christian Alvarado won the mile in 4:11.94, setting his school's record as well as the meet record. The previous meet record of 4:13.3 was set in 2009 by John McGowan of the Sidwell Friends School (Washington, D.C.). Dhahran Velasquez of Capital Prep finished second in 4:14.47, which set his school's record. He led for much of the race, with Alvarado taking the lead with about half a lap to go.
"I'm really pleased, and a little bit shocked, to be honest," Alvarado said of his performance. "My goal was to get a personal record, which was 4:16, and hopefully get the school record, which was 4:14. I knew coming here that I would have a good shot at that because the conditions are perfect. The track is fast, it's at night, so it's pretty cool, and Danbury High School does a great job of setting up this meet for us high-schoolers. It's a great meet. I love it."
East Hampton's Tyler Rubega won the pole vault competition, clearing 13-10. Danbury's Leland Roberts came in second, clearing 13-0.
Rubega cleared 13-6 on his first attempt, and Roberts missed at 13-6 on his two attempts at 13-6, giving Rubega the win. Rubega then went for 13-10 to set his school's record and cleared it on his first try. He then took three cracks at clearing 14-1 and missed on all three.