Boys track & field repeats as New England champs, girls claim second

Big Red boys collect the Academy's eighth team title of the year, while girls claim second place for the second straight season.

Brian Muldoon
May 22, 2024
Exeter Track and Field 2024 Champions

The boys track and field team captured their second straight New England title while the girls placed second for the second consecutive season. 

The Exeter boys track and field team earned its second straight New England Division I title at the New England Prep School Track Association Championships (NEPSTA) over the weekend on the campus of Deerfield Academy.

The Exeter girls posted a second-place finish for the second year in a row.

The Big Red boys ran away from the 13-team field, earning 111 points — 21 more than runner-up Loomis Chaffee and 43 points ahead of the Milton Academy.

This second consecutive first overall finish makes it five NEPSTA Division I championships for the boys program since 2013. The girls’ side has finished in second place in five of the last six championship meets.

The title is the Academy's eighth New England crown this academic year. Big Red added championships this spring in boys track, cycling, girls golf and boys volleyball to wins by the boys basketball, girls swimming and diving and girls and boys cross-country teams. The football team was also the conference champion in the fall.

With a foundation of incredible, big-bang performances, Exeter earned critical contributions in a variety of events on both the boys’ and girls’ track and field sides. In this meet, Exeter athletes earned 10 individual New England titles and two New England top relay titles. Three of those winning performances set NEPSTA records.

Byron Grevious '24 was named the meet MVP for the second straight year. Grevious captured the New England title in the 1,500 meter with a time of 3:56.19, the 800 in 1:55.12 and the 3,000 in 8:35.18. All three races saw Grevious sit patiently in the lead pack. All three races had moments where competitors, some of whom also have national caliber credentials, took their best shots. In the end, all three races saw Grevious close with breathtaking strength and speed over the final 300 meters.

Upper Jaylen Bennett ’25 claimed a pair of New England titles as he earned a first-place finish in the 200 meters, crossing at 21.92, while also running to the top spot in the 400 with a time of 47.99. The 400 time broke his own outdoor school record. Bennett teamed up with Isaiah Reese ’25, Thomas Leopold ’24 and Cordel Epale ’24 for a time of 3:23.24 in the 4x400 meter relay, edging Deerfield at line by just .27 seconds.

Bennett and Reese also joined up with Kai Honda ’24 and Elias Warner ’26 to run to a time of 42.45 and photo finish in the 4x100 meter where they narrowly earned a second-place finish, falling to Milton by just .03 seconds.

Honda added a first-place finish and set a 28-year-old NEPSTA meet record in the 100 meters, cruising to a time of 10.75. Honda was the only runner to finish under 11 seconds.

Isaiah Reese '25 continued the buzz around his toughness and athleticism with how the afternoon unfolded. Late into the meet, Reese found himself leaving the warm-up of the javelin to swap shoes to compete in the 200 meters. He earned a point for the team in that race, immediately changed back into his javelin shoes to throw 191 feet, 8 inches for a New England title. Not five minutes later, Isaiah was back on the track with teammates Epale, Leopold and Bennett for the 4x400m relay win.

Other notable finishes were David Goodall’s '24 huge second-place finish in the 800, Tanner Boulden’s '24 second-place finish in the javelin, and Tommy Hoey’s '25 third-place finish in the discus.

On the girls’ side it was Tenley Nelson ’24 and Jannah Maguire ’25 who led Big Red.

Nelson claimed first place in the 800 meters with a time of 2:16.83 before repeating as the New England champion in the 1,500, crossing at 4:44.29, five seconds ahead of the second-place finisher.

One of the biggest highlights of the day included Nelson, who was part of the record-setting 4x400 relay team. She joined Gianna Phipps ’25, Tate Kelly ’25 and Maguire to run to a time of 3:53.60, beating the NEPSTA meet record and the program record by more than six seconds.

Maguire captured another meet record in the 300 meter hurdles, earning a New England title with a time of 43.67. The previous record had stood since 2003. The upper also finished third overall in the 100 meter hurdles with a time of 15.42, while teaming up with Kelly, Phipps and Anna Kim ’24 to earn a third-place finish in the 4x100 relay when they crossed at 49.32.

Other notable finishes included Phipp’s third- and fourth-place finishes in the 100 and 200 meters, respectively, captain Sydney Anderson’s third-place finish in the shot put, Steph Handte’s fourth in the long jump, the third-place finish by the 4x100m relay (Kelly, Kim, Maguire, Phipps), and Maya Sharar’s '24 coming off injury to add points in the discus.