MANCHESTER - When Bristol Centralâ€™s Hunter Peterson saw his name in sixth place at Wednesdayâ€™s boys decathlon with only two events to go, he quickly realized that this wasnâ€™t just about having one more high school track competition before graduating.
â€śI did not expect that at all,â€ť Peterson said. â€śOnce I realized that I was that high, I realized I better buckle down and stop just having fun, and try to get some good performances in.â€ť
Peterson used a strong fifth-place finish in the javelin to enter the final event in fourth place and finished the competition in seventh place overall, falling just short of a medal but far ahead of where he originally anticipated he would end the event.
â€śI honestly just came here expecting to do some events and have fun, but wound up doing pretty OK for myself,â€ť Peterson said.
Petersonâ€™s teammate, Jose Navedo, experienced a similar performance in the decathlon, coming in 14th place overall, which was helped by a top-10 finish in the pole vault.
â€śItâ€™s actually kind of surprising,â€ť Navedo said. â€śOut of 37 kids, we were in the top 15.â€ť
The duoâ€™s final marks were helped in the javelin, an event both didnâ€™t have much experience with before the competition. After both went far in the pole vault, there was little time to prepare for the javelin, which was the next event on the docket.
â€śBefore our flight was going, we were just trying to put everything together,â€ť Navedo said of his 16th-place finish in the javelin. â€śAnd we did.â€ť
Jared Sharp of Suffield won the event with a final score of 6,027. Peterson finished with 5,349 points and Navedo ended his day with 4,998.