Fields Set for 2019 Tommy Cochary High School Mile
Event champions to be awarded $2500 athletic & wellness activities grant for their school in their name
From Falmouth Road Race
FALMOUTH, Mass. — Nineteen high school athletes from throughout Massachusetts will compete in the Tommy Cochary High School Mile on Saturday, August 17, in conjunction with the New Balance Falmouth Road Race the next day, race organizers have announced.
Among the top athletes expected in the high school Mile, which is the finale of the Falmouth Track Festival, are Mike Griffin of Wrentham (King Philip Regional HS), Tyler Brogan of Franklin (Franklin HS), Makayla Paige of Tewksbury (Tewksbury Memorial HS) and Kate Connolly of Natick (Natick HS).
The track festival will begin at 4:00pm at the James Kalperis Track at Falmouth High School with the SBLI Family Fun Run, followed by the Aetna Falmouth Elite Mile and then the Tommy Cochary High School Mile. Admission is free.
The high school Mile, which began in 2010, was renamed eight years ago in honor of Tommy Cochary, a young Falmouth runner who was killed in a drunk-driving accident in 1990. The road race is a huge part of the family’s life, and athletes are chosen to compete not only because they are among the best high school Milers in Massachusetts but also because they embody Tommy’s spirit of an active life and fun-loving attitude, and because they have shown evidence of making smart choices in their lives.
Griffin, the 2017 Tommy Cochary champion as a freshman, is the MIAA Eastern Division 2 champion in the Mile outdoors and state champion indoors, and was runner-up in the 2000 meter steeplechase at New Balance Nationals Outdoor this spring. He is ranked #4 in Massachusetts for the 2019 outdoor season, with a time of 4:16.44. Brogan, who finished third here last year, is the 2019 Division 1 champion in the Mile and is ranked #5 in the state (4:17.01). Both will be competing in the Tommy Cochary High School Mile for the third time.
Both of the top-ranked girls will be making their Tommy Cochary debuts, although the name Connolly is certainly familiar: Kate’s sister, Grace, won the past two years. Kate Connolly is the 2019 Division 2 champion indoors in the 2 Mile, and ran leadoff on the Natick distance medley relay team that took third at 2019 New Balance Nationals Indoor. Her family spends summers in Falmouth. Paige, meanwhile, is the 2019 All-State outdoor champion at 800 meters and indoor champion at 600 meters. She is ranked #1 in the state at both 800 meters and the 400 meter hurdles, and is ranked #9 nationally at 800 meters. (2:06.27).
Among those challenging Paige and Connolly in the girls’ Mile will be Summer Bejarano of Halifax (Silver Lake Regional HS); Alison Gillooly of Stow (Nashoba Regional HS); Nora Johnson and Emma Kerimo, both of Concord (Concord-Carlisle HS); Isabel May of Southampton (Northfield Mount Hermon); Danna Ofek of Lexington (Lexington HS); Pria Parker of Hingham (Hingham HS) and Bethany Steiner of Millis (Millis HS).
For the boys, Griffin and Brogan will face Bobby Carew of Milton (Milton HS); Alex Craig of Mattapoisett (Old Rochester Regional HS); Caleb Gartner of Falmouth (Middlesex School); Shane Grant of Walpole (Walpole HS); Sean Kay of Melrose (Arlington Catholic HS); Marko Kovacevic of Concord (Concord-Carlisle HS); and Oliver Fried of Dover (Dover-Sherborn HS), runner-up in the 2019 MIAA All-State Mile ahead of Griffin (third) and Brogan (fourth).
Winners of both the boys’ and girls’ Mile races will have a grant of $2500 awarded to their school in their name to be used in a way that implements change in athletics or wellness, such as new equipment, team uniforms or after-school wellness activities.
All of the Tommy Cochary Milers are involved in extracurricular activities and public-service projects outside of athletics, including overseas missions, church projects, tutoring, volunteer coaching and helping on an Appalachian Mountain Club trail crew.
For more information on the Tommy Cochary High School Mile, the SBLI Family Fun Run, the Aetna Falmouth Elite Mile or the 47th running of the New Balance Falmouth Road Race, go to: www.falmouthroadrace.com