There's something about Sam going on in the throws down in lower New York. Not only is Division 2's Sam Morillo (Valhalla) the Overall State Leader in the Shot Put and Discus - but she is also improving. Morillo, who plays basketball in the Winter, has twice exceeded 140ft in the Discus this season, and twice over 45-ft in the Shot Put.
Both marks are personal bests that push Morillo to the forefront. She leads the State by two feet in the Shot Put over Ashely Walsh (Bayport-Blue Point) with her 45-3.5 from Counties, and has an even bigger gap of 10-ft in the Discus over Rachel Donner (Iroquois) with her 145-7 toss from Loucks.
The marks put her in unprecedented air. The Section 1 Discus record is held by Brenna O'Connor (Haldane, Class of 86) at 146-11, a reasonable mark to attain. Morillo also stands as Section 1 #2 All-Time in the Shot, chasing the record of 46-0.75 set by Briyah Brown (New Rochelle) back in 2013. While the goal may be to repeat as Divison 2 State Champion, the sky is the limit for the one season athlete.
That in itself is a rarity at the upper levels of the sport. Many of the State Champions in Spring Track have done multiple seasons of Track/FIeld coming in. Distance runners have cross country, while Sprint and Field has indoor Track. Morillo is coming off basketball, and it hasn't slowed her throwing down, making a case for the benefits of rejecting specialization. At Spring States last year, Alex Tudor (Shenendehowa) took home several State Titles after competing only in Spring Track. She too was a basketball player who made the transition well.
Talent is talent, regardless what sport is being played. For Morillo, with Volleyball in the Fall, Basketball in the Winter, and Track in the Spring, nowhere is that more evident.