by Ken Brown
CRAFTBURY – Although the Craftsbury Academy (CA) track and field team graduated their most decorated athlete in Camille Bolduc and will enter the season with a new coach in Abby Schaible, they return a ton of young talent who are poised to keep the championship traditions at The Common going for years to come.
Schaible replaces Jeff Tucker after a very successful season in 2021 that saw Bolduc add three more state titles to a historic career at CA that ended with five individual state championships. Although the Utica graduate has no previous head coaching experience, she has competed at the high school and college level and assisted Mike LeVangie with the Charger cross country team this past fall. She will look to keep the momentum going with a girls’ team that finished third overall in the Division IV State meet last spring and a talented boys’ team that saw juniors Cormac Leahy and Charlie Krebs win their first individual state titles, as well as Matthew and Alex Califano teaming with Leahy and Linden Stelma-Leonard to win the 4X800m relay state title.
“I got a chance to really get to know some of the student athletes this fall, and they are great group of kids that are dedicated and driven. I’m really excited about this team and the opportunity to coach them. I probably have a little different coaching style than they are used to, but I think everyone is adjusting well, having fun, and are working hard towards the big goals we have this season,” said Schaible.
Schaible’s only senior on the girls’ side is Ida Eames, who posted a runner-up finish in the triple jump and third place in the 100m hurdles at the state championships last spring. Sophomore Sadie Skorstad is a multi-sport rising star and will be the sprinting captain for the Chargers. Freshman Anika Leahy and junior Ella Gillespie will also bring their athleticism to a strong girls’ roster. Senior field captain Noah McKibbin will look to build off a strong indoor season this past winter, when he qualified for the New England Championships along with Alex and Matthew Califano. Junior distance captain Cormac Leahy is poised to break out in a big way this spring along with Charlie Krebs, Dalton Gravel, and newcomer Silas Eames, who round out a strong boys’ squad.
“We have so many worthy captains and it was a hard decision but, overall, this whole group is filled with great athletes and they are highly motivated and working hard for the start of the season. Sadie is excited to chase down her personal records, Ida provides great leadership with her work ethic, Ella brings a lot of athleticism to the team, and Anika is a super strong young runner. Noah had a stellar indoor season, along with Matthew and Alex, and he is really excited for a big senior year. Cormac is just an amazing athlete and we’re looking forward to what he can accomplish this spring. Dalton and Charlie have a great chance to surpass their personal records from last year. Silas is a great young addition to a strong boys’ team and he is looking strong early and progressing well,” said Schaible.
The Chargers are scheduled to open the track and field season at St. Johnsbury Academy next Tuesday and will travel to Lyndon Institute the following Tuesday.
“This group is really excited for the start of the season and are highly motivated to continue the history, the success, and state records this program has achieved the last few years,” added Schaible.