CORNING - Corning's Lindsey Butler won a state title and local teams performed well on the first day of the NYSPHSAA meet.

Butler led from start to finish in the 800-meter run with a 400 split at 1:01.89 and a final time of 2:06.88. The Virginia Tech-commit threw her hands up as she crossed the finish line after realizing that she had captured a state title.

“It was just a really exciting moment,” said Butler. “When I was in the 600 in indoor, I wasn't sure if I won and I knew I won this time --- and it was such a good feeling.”

In her performance, Butler set the Section IV record, school record and was a second away from breaking the meet record of 2:05.63.

After watching Butler finish second last year, Corning head coach Joe Melanson couldn’t articulate what he felt seeing Butler win a state title.

“I can't put it into words, I was super excited about it,” said Melanson. “She got after it out of the gate this race and she knows what it's like to close. After last year, I couldn't be happier for her. I took her loss hard last year.”

Butler cut nearly four seconds off of her 2018 time of 2:10.17. She attributed that to several factors.

“I think it was just a combination of doing cross country for the first time and just working really hard,” said Butler. “The coaches did everything they could this year to make sure I was peaking at the right time. It was a lot of hard work on my side and the coaches’ as well.”

Jayla Skeete finished 16th in the same race with a time of 2:16.69, two seconds faster than her seed time, and Elmira Notre Dame’s Alyssa Walker finished 27th in 2:21.05.

Odessa-Montour's Zach Elliot captured a sectional title in the boys Division II shotput with a throw of 55-6.00 and MacKenna Taggart placed 4th in discus in Division 2 and earned a state medal for Haverling. Taggart set a new school record with a throw of 118’6”.

Corning’s 4x400 relay of Butler, Elora Ferrie, Jayla Skeete and Emma Brown finished seventh to qualify for finals with a time of 3:56.05.

Other finishers from Corning included Nathan Lawson in the 3,200-meter finals (25th; 9:42.36), Faithe Ketchum in the 3,000-meter finals (22nd; 10:35.10), Bobby Mechalke in the shot put (12th; 42-6.50) and Otto Sutton in the 400 hurdles (17th; 56.83).

Melanson was pleased overall with the results of day one and his teams’ effort.

“We were pretty happy about [the day], you always worry and wonder about if things went a bit differently, but everybody went after it today and everyone went as hard as they could.”

Horseheads also sent several competitors to the state meet, including Nathan Wilsoncroft in the 400-meter run (17th; 51.57), the 4x400 relay of Matthew Stasiw, Zachary Cowen, Owen Juan and Wilsoncroft (13th; 3:26.30), Holton Ike in the discus (13th; 134-1) and Stasiw in the long jump (13th; 20-6.25).

*** Breakout box****

Sunday’s events

10 a.m. 2,000-meter steeple final - Claire Mason
10 a.m. 3,000-meter steeple final - Bryce Derick
1:50 p.m. 4x800-meter finals - John Cleary, Steven Segal, Otto Sutton and Bryce Derick
1:50 p.m. 4x800-meter finals - Lindsey Butler, Jayla Skeete, Claire Mason and Cleo Baker
2:45 p.m. 4x400-meter finals - Lindsey Butler, Elora Ferrie, Jayla Skeete and Emma Brown