Law develops welcoming formula with open arms

Cultivate the possible is the belief system put forth by Law girls’ track coach Caitlin Corriveau and boys’ counterpart Joe Beler.

“We give them a nudge and the confidence to try something else,” said Corriveau, a 2000 graduate of Law who assisted with the girls’ program before taking full rein this season. “We like to bring them to bigger Invitationals. It doesn’t matter if we win or lose. We want them to try something new. If you put freshman in a freshmen heat at an Invitational, they get to see where they stand with athletes of similar age and experience. They see they are capable. As a 14-year-old you are where you should be. We’ll work to get you where you want to be.”

Sydney Simpson, Shelby Green, Lauren Davis, MaKenna Sharpe and Mackenzie Powers are team captains. Powers and Simpson are sprinters. Green runs distance, Green mid distance and Sharpe is a thrower and pole vaulter.

It is no accident they were chosen.

Corriveau said: “The leadership we receive from them is incredible. They are there for the new kids. Joe and I decided to combine programs to fit where we do best. This goes to captains as well, so that we have eyes all over the field. They check techniques and help teammates however they can.”

Caden Simpson is a top hurdler.

“Caden is amazing,” Corriveau said of Law’s All-Stater. “Riley Lapham is a freshman who every time she hurdles keeps setting personal bests. Emma Nelly, Caden, Mackenzie and Sydney are jumper extraordinaire. Olivia Pisacane and Paige Kandor are freshmen learning techniques in long and triple jumps.”

Sophomore Ellie Van Waveren, part of the 4x100 relay, Caden Simpson, Hailey Russo (sophomore) and Taylor Coretti (freshman) head up a strong group of sprinters.

“Our 4x800 relay qualified for states at our last meet,” Corriveau said of seniors Allison Gachi, Davis, Green, and sophomore Claire Moulton. “We are also getting freshman Tierney Fedigan, Natalia Michnik and Alana Pires involved.”

Green, Davis, junior Aislinn Burns, Michnik and Fedigan run the 4x400.

“MaKenna Sharpe is our premier pole vaulter and set a school record at 9 feet. She is also good at shot and discus,” Corriveau said. “Junior Kalli Kinsman is top three for us in shot, discus and javelin.”

Letting athletes choose events not yet on their radar has worked out well.

“Last year Emma Savoie told me she wanted to try throwing and I told her to go for it,” Corriveau said of her senior. “She gets better every time out and has become clutch in discus and javelin. Emma found a place to shine.”

Corriveau pointed to her assistants for the team’s success.

“Matt Schoonmaker has a throwing background and works with boys and girls honing their skills,” she said. “Tim Dooley helps with jumpers and vaulters. Pat Doheny helps with high jumpers and helps the kids wherever she can.

She added: “The balance in sports is being good at what you do and to have fun doing it. We cultivate a community. It is important they know that their high school experience is going to be fulfilling because there is space for them in this community. A place where they feel safe and valued.” Twitter: @blox354