Brunswick’s Tyler Patterson, left, edges out Falmouth’s Ben Greene to win the 1,600 meter run during the Class A track and field championships at Massabesic High School on June 5. Ben McCanna/Portland Press Herald Buy this Photo

WATERBORO — It was a memorable season for track and field athletes this spring, but especially for Brunswick distance runner Tyler Patterson.

For starters, championships were up for grabs this season, and Patterson made the most of that opportunity. 

The senior won titles in 1,600- and 3,200-meter runs at the Class A state meet on June 5 in Waldoboro.

“Being able to finish off with two wins was huge,” added Patterson. “Many athletes don’t always get the chance to win a state championship, so it’s gratifying to see the years of work pay off.” 

The Midcoast was well-represented in standout distance runners, too, with Mt. Ararat’s Grady Satterfield and Jace Hollenbach also turning in strong springs.

At the state meet, Satterfield finished fourth in the 1,600, fifth in the 3,200, and was a part of the Mt. Ararat 4×800 relay that placed second. 

Grady Satterfield of Mt. Ararat leads the pack during the boys 4×800 relay at the Class A state track meet on June 5 at Massabesic High School in Waterboro. Eli Canfield/The Times Record

“Like I said, we didn’t know we’d get to this point two or three months ago,” said Satterfield. “I ran well (June 5) and I’m already looking forward to next season.”

Satterfield and Hollenbach organized a student-led petition in April that asked the Maine Principals’ Association to relax the mask-wearing mandate for distance runners in meets. Many distance runners across the state, including Patterson, signed it. 

Ultimately, the MPA dropped the mask requirement for outdoor high school sports a day after Gov. Janet Mills said on April 27 that masks were no longer mandated outdoors in Maine.

“It was something we were passionate about,” said Satterfield. “I’m just glad we were able to work with our local representation to make it work for everyone. … It’s a massive adrenaline rush to be here. The team stuck together through all the ups and downs this season just for this opportunity.” 

Added Patterson, who will run at Cornell University in the fall: “I just tried to stay focused on my training throughout the season. In March, we didn’t know what the state meet could look like or what the situation with masking could be. After a lot of missed opportunities, this season was a step in the right direction.”

Mt. Ararat distance runner Jace Hollenbach poses during a track practice earlier this season in Topsham. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal Buy this Photo

The atmosphere at Saturday’s meet was undeniable. 

“Obviously after missing the last three state championships (outdoor in 2020, cross country, and indoor track and field) it felt good to be back competing at a fairly normal meet,” said Patterson.

Added Satterfield: “I mean, look at all these people that are here and the environment, this is awesome. I had fun this season, the feeling of being on a team really showed. It would’ve been much harder to get through this season without my teammates and their support along the way.”

Elsewhere at the meet, Mt. Ararat’s Michaela Langston broke a Class A state meet record in the triple jump. Her jump of 38-08.50 surpassed the previous mark of 38-04, which was set in 2008 by Jesse Labreck of Messalonskee. 

Langston also finished fourth in the long jump. 

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