Albion’s first boys track title came in 1983

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 20 May 2020 at 9:54 am

Contributed Photo by Photos By Bruce – The members of Albion’s 1983 Niagara-Orleans League champion boys track team included, in front, Darrell Owens and Tim Bourke. In the second row are Mike Daniels, Todd Adams, Jim Winters, John Kappler, Doug Platt, Mike Harding, Morris Taylor and Bill Swan. In the third row are Coach Bob Ord, Tony Eibl, Fred Simmons, Theo Warren, Mike Salvatore, Jim Atwell, Jim Owens, Dean Covis, Jeff Morrison and Dan Gehl. In the back row are Andy Gallup, Tom Hooker, Roger Misso, Rich Miller, Eric Knaak, Tom Wilkins, Chris Rice, Gary Hinnenkamp, Todd Ross, Tom Mingione and Coach Al Johnson.

Last spring the Albion boys track team went undefeated (6-0) to capture the Niagara-Orleans League championship for the 15th time since the Purple Eagles first claimed the crown in 1983.

That spring in 1983 the Purple Eagles went undefeated (7-0) at the All-League meet to lock up their first N-O title.

Albion had finished the dual meet portion of the N-O season in a three-way tie for first place at 6-1 with Newfane and Wilson. In dual meet competition the Purple Eagles had trimmed Newfane 73-68 but dropped a narrow 71-70 decision to Wilson.

The Purple Eagles though broke that deadlock by garnering 56 points to take top honors at the All-League meet to claim the crown as Newfane finished in the runner-up spot with 46.

At the All-League meet the Purple Eagles got first place finishes from Bill Swan in the 3200, Gary Hinnenkamp in the Pole Vault and Tom Wilkins in the 1600 Walk. Swan and Wilkins also teamed up with Theo Warren and Mike Daniels to win the 3200 Relay.

Albion also got second place finishes from Daniels in the 800 and Jim Atwell in the 200 as well as third place finishes by Swan in the 1600, Atwell in the 100, Todd Adams in the Pole Vault and Chris Rice in the Discus.

The Purple Eagles also took second in the 400 Relay and third in the 1600 Relay.

It would be five years before Albion would regain the N-O title but then the Purple Eagles ran off four straight championship campaigns from 1988-1991.

That run included four straight All-League meet wins in the Long Jump by Ray Callicutt, three in the 110 Hurdles by Billy Newsome and two each in th 100 by Mark Brewer, the 800 by Van Warner, the 3200 by Geoff Sidari and the Pole Vault by Gary Drought.

Albion then claimed the N-O title in 1994 and 1996 before putting together a huge streak of seven straight championships from 2004 to 2010.

That seven year run included a triple win effort at the 2005 All-League meet by Tyrone Newsome in the Long Jump, High Jump and Triple Jump. It also included two wins in the 100 by both Rayshod Rackley and Morris Taylor and two in the 400 by Kenny Boyer.

Then last spring the Purple Eagles ended a nearly decade long drought by going 6-0 to claim the N-O crown.