Led by senior Cate Allen's victory in the 1,000-meter race, the Fairfield Warde girls finished fourth as a team on Wednesday at the FCIAC indoor track and field championships at the Floyd Little Athletic Center at Hillhouse High School in New Haven. Last year, they were sixth.
Fairfield Ludlowe's girls placed 12th in the team competition among 15 schools. The Mustangs' boys team was 12th of 14 teams, with the Falcons' boys team 13th.
Darien (95 points) won the girls' team competition for the second straight season. Staples finished second (60) and Ridgefield finished third (47). Warde amassed 40 points, four more than fifth-place Wilton. Danbury (89), Ridgefield (78) and Staples (69) were the top three boys teams.
Allen, who missed the FCIAC East divisional meet on Jan. 24, won the 1,000 with a time of 2 minutes and 59.40 seconds. She edged Ridgefield's Laura Hergenrother (2:59.88) by 0.48 seconds. Erica Hefnway (3:05.66) of Staples was third.
"It's definitely a speed race, I think I had good competition in the race and the top three girls had a chance," Allen said. "We kind of worked off each other, and I think it was a good race for everyone."
Allen (11:27.12) finished third in the 3,200 behind surprise winner Claire Howlett (10:28.56), of Westhill, and Staples sophomore sensation Hannah DeBalsi (10:30.79). Allen stayed up with the front two for roughly half the race before settling into third.
"My goal was to stick with them longer than that," said Allen, who won the 1,600 in 2013.
Ridgefield won the 4-by-800-meter relay (9:53.41) over second-place Warde (9:57.33), with Quinn Igram, Paige Hanley, Roey Mappa and Hannah Dougherty running for the Mustangs. Warde was fourth in the 4x400 relay with Hanley, Sarah Reilly, Allen and Dougherty in a time of 4:16.50. Ludlowe was fifth in 4:20.68 with Rachel Hurst, Kate O'Shea, Alex Wykoff and Emma Koether.
Warde senior Blossom Jean-Jacques was second in the high jump with a leap of 5-feet-0 inches. Mappa placed fifth in the 1,600 in 5:31.88.
For Ludlowe, Koether placed fourth in the 300 in 43.22. Wykoff was fourth in the 55-meter hurdles in 9.19.
Ryan Lacey contributed to this story