Padua Academy


Depth carries Padua to DIAA Indoor Girls Crown

Padua Indoor Track 2016 (1)

“It’s pretty safe to start calling the Padua track and field program a dynasty.” Said Brad Myers of Delaware News Journal.

The Pandas ran their streak of state titles to 11 on Saturday, calling on all of their depth to hold off a determined effort from Smyrna for the girl’s team crown in the DIAA Indoor Track and Field Championships at the Prince George’s Sports and Learning Complex.

Padua has won the last four Indoor titles, the last three DIAA Division I cross country championships, and four straight DIAA Outdoor trophies (two in Division I, two in Division II).

“That shows the strength of the team and the depth of the team and the teamwork they had,” Pandas coach Marnie Giunta said. “… It’s impressive, everything they’ve done.”

Padua won only three of the 15 events, but still outpointed Smyrna 133½-100. One of the keys was a 1-2-3 sweep in the pole vault, as Darby Deutsch ‘17 and Kelly Muschiatti ‘16 both cleared 11 feet and Camryn Harris ‘17 reached 10-6 to give the Pandas 24 points.

“We expected that,” Giunta said. “Our pole vaulters are very strong. They’ve been dominating all year, so that was something we knew they could do.”

Then there was Lydia Olivere ‘18, who continued her domination of the distances. The sophomore broke her own meet record in the 1,600, and had enough left in the tank to win the 3,200.

Olivere credited runner-up Isabelle Pilson of Tower Hill (5:02.99) and third-place Rachel Beston of Newark (5:06.14) for pressing a fast pace that allowed her to break five minutes (4:59.91) in the 1,600.

“I was very surprised,” she said. “The whole season, I’ve been running like 5:12 to 5:15, so I didn’t think I was going to be anywhere near there. But Isabelle and Rachel are phenomenal runners, and they just pushed me so hard.”

Then Olivere tapped deep into her reserves to snag the 3,200 in 10:57.61, besting Beston by 4½ seconds.

“Coming two hours after the mile, it was just about guts and running for my team,” she said. “That was obviously hard, running tired, but you just have to block it out.”

For the whole story, read: Delaware Today, Brad Myers

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