Frosh McNamara keys win over runner-up Lakeland
It’s been a smooth exchange as the baton continues to be passed in the Northville girls track and field program.
The Mustangs had to fill a gaping hole when three-event Division 1 state champion Chloe Abbott graduated last year and headed to Purdue.
But freshman Clare McNamara has assumed the torch and Northville hasn’t missed a beat after capturing its sixth consecutive regional title Friday night at chilly Milford High School.
Northville, the KLAA Kensington Conference champ, fended off a strong challenge by KLAA Lakes Conference champ White Lake Lakeland for the crown, 135-112.
Novi and Fenton tied for third with 61, while host Milford was fifth with 57 in the 13-school Division 1-Region 7 field.
McNamara has made quite a splash this season as a ninth-grader and that was never more evident than Friday night when she took the long jump (17 feet, 8.5 inches), 400 dash (58.30) and anchored the first-place 4 x 200 relay (1:45.21), which also included Savannah Manley, Erin McCallum and Yasmine Affes.
McNamara almost helped add another win for the Mustangs in the 4 x 400 relay, but Milford’s anchor leg Mallory Barrett, a senior headed to run at the University of Michigan, held off the talented freshman at the finish line. Milford’s first place time was 4:02.48, while Northville’s was 4:02.59.
“I knew it was going to be close,” McNamara said. “I went out as fast as I could, stuck with her (Barrett) through the curve and gave it…
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