NAPLES — Greely senior Katherine Leggat-Barr felt a little on edge before her 1,600-meter race at the Western Maine Conference track and field championships Saturday. It was just the second outdoor meet of her high school career, after all.

The Princeton-bound runner went right to the front in the 1,600 meters, pushed the pace on the third lap and pulled away from Falmouth sophomore Malaika Pasch on the final lap to set a meet record with a time of 5 minutes, 5.61 seconds. The previous record was 5:05.84, set by Elise Moody-Roberts of Cape Elizabeth in 2005.

“I was very nervous coming into today because this was my first race in six weeks,” said Leggat-Barr, who helped Greely win the Division I team title. “I wasn’t really expecting much. I knew that Malaika has an amazing kick, so I was trying to take it out of her a little earlier. I’m really happy with it.”

Leggat-Barr, a two-time Class B champion in cross country, has always played lacrosse in the spring. This year, after helping the Rangers win the Class B indoor track title, she asked to do both sports.

“I’ve been really focusing on (lacrosse) and just running on my own, so I’m really lucky my coaches let me do both,” Leggat-Barr said. “I’ve done lacrosse all four years, so I wanted to stick with it, but I’m also running in college, so I wanted to stay in shape and try to help the team to another state championship.”

Leggat-Barr came back later in the day and won the 3,200 in a facility record time of 11:18.8 and was named the meet’s top girls’ track performer.

Traip Academy’s Evan Porter, who won three individual events and anchored the Rangers’ winning 1,600 relay team, was the top boys’ track performer. Falmouth’s Adelaide Cooke (first in shot put, javelin and discus) and York’s Zack Westman (first in long jump) were the outstanding field event performers.

The WMC team championships are broken into two divisions. The York boys and Greely girls won Division I and Wells swept the Division II titles.

Porter’s spring season was in doubt six months ago when the Traip senior suffered a hip flexor injury. There was little sign of a lingering effect, as Porter swept the hurdle races and also won the 100 – taking all three events for the second straight year. He broke his own facility record in the 110 hurdles with a prelim time of 14.94 seconds and set a 300 hurdles facility record in 40.15. His time of 11.1 in the 100 was his best of the season.

“Going sub-15 in the hurdles was a PR I’ve been chasing for a long time and was really exciting,” Porter said.

Yarmouth junior Luke Laverdiere dominated the 1,600, leading all the way to break a facility record held by Ben True (Greely, 2004), with a time of 4:19.66.

“This is the way I always run, but I did want to run sub 4:20,” Laverdiere said. “I usually slow down a little bit, but hopefully I’m strong enough to bring it through. Considering I ran 4:19 without anyone in sight, (that’s) pretty good.”

Laverdiere also won the 800 in a season-best 2:00.38. He didn’t run the 3,200, which he considers his best event.

The most dramatic finish was in the girls’ 300 hurdles, with 100 hurdles winner Darcy Cochran of Cape Elizabeth against top seed Morgan Selby of Greely. They were even until Selby hit the final hurdle and fell. Cochran ran a facility record time of 46.77. Selby got up and finished sixth.

“It was a great race. I definitely could feel (Selby) right on my shoulder,” Cochran said. “Honestly, I don’t know who would have won. She’s a great competitor.”

Pasch (2:21.12 in 800); Jake Martin of York (6-4 in high jump) and Ben Rudnick of Falmouth (13-6 in pole vault) also broke facility records.

Gray-New Gloucester sophomore Madison Post won the 100 and 200 and anchored the Patriots’ winning 400 relay team.

Steve Craig can be reached at 791-6413 or:

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