Local Athletes Finish Strong at PIAA Track and Field Championships | Sports

The buzzer sounded instead of a starting gun at Shippensburg University’s Seth Grove Field and the runners were off. The Greenville Women’s 4×800 Relay was in the lead until Central Cambria came back for the win.

The Trojans’ good start still resulted in a second-place finish in the 2A event on day two of the PIAA Athletics Championships on Saturday.

Greenville’s 4×800 relay team consisted of Karis McElhaney, Clair Anderson, Macy Blatt and Josie Lewis who finished with a mark of 9:43.97.

Greenville also earned a medal in the boys. Les Troyens took third place in the 4×400 boys 2A relay. The team of Levi Swartz, Ty Csonka, Toby Williams and Riley Runyon ran a 3:27.10. Greenville received the final qualifying spot for the event on Friday.

“It’s fun having great kids, and we have great kids, Greenville head coach Megan Yeatts said. “They are working hard and all their hard work has paid off in these two stints today.”

Lindsey Martineau finished fourth in the 2A 100m hurdles with a time of 15.34 seconds. Martineau followed with a fifth-place finish in the 300 hurdles, clocking 46.93.

Robert Morris’ future racer has started slowly this year. Eventually, she saw her time change and put on a solid performance on the biggest stage.

“I just started slow and got back to where I was last year,” said Martineau. I’m happy with that.”

Reynolds’ Grace Bresnan also picked up a second medal. The Raider finished second in the 2A women’s triple jump. She was 37-2 1/4 on her sixth attempt after finishing sixth in Friday’s long jump.

Mercer’s Willow Myers recorded her second top five of the state meet. Myers finished fifth in the 2A women’s 3,200-meter race after running 11:05.41, Saturday’s first run. The Mustangs long distance runner finished fifth in the 2A 1600 race on Friday.

Abby Steffler earned a fifth-place finish in the 3A Girls 800. She ran in 2:14.04 for the Eagles.

It was the culmination of a wild trail trip for Steffler. When she came to Grove City Area High School, she was a sprinter. Slowly she was transformed into a 200 and 400 runner. By the end of her high school career, she became an 800 and 1600 athlete.

“Her big race and her favorite race is the 800m. She shows so much confidence and poise in that race,” Grove City head coach Ben English said.

Sanaa Brodie finished sixth in the Women’s 200 2A. The recent Farrell graduate clocked a personal best 25.95 to cap her career with the Steelers.

Brodie thought she could have done better. She admits her attention was split between the track and graduation. But she still set a personal record.

“I didn’t do what I wanted to do, but I’m proud of myself for getting there,” Brodie said.

Erika McGowan finished tied for sixth for Lakeview in the girls’ 2A pole vault. She cleared an attempt from 10 feet, six inches.

Grove City’s 4×800 relay team finished fourth in the 2A event. The Eagles – Caleb Hawke, Justy Brown, Wyatt Shepson and Joshua Jones – clocked 8:13.74. Greenville finished eighth in the event as Jalen Ritzert, Toby Williams, Jase Herrick and Riley Runyon ran in 8:16.87.

The Eagles 4×800 will mostly be back next season. Brown, Shepson, and Jones are underclass, but they will lose Hawke upon graduation.

“The boys have raced hard all season,” said English. “They ran hard. It’s a group of cross-country kids who have been running hard since last June.”

Solomon Glavach of Wilmington tied for fifth in the Class 2A pole vault by eliminating 13-6.

Other locals who competed on Saturday but did not finish in the top eight:

Grove City’s MJ Pottinger (16th, 9:49.41) in the 3200-meter 2A race and Commodore Perry’s Jack Thomas (19th, 40-1 1/2) in the 2A triple jump.

In Girls 3A, Hickory’s 3200 relay team of Jillian White, Noelle Dahlstrom, Isabella Gingras and Bailey Wier (26th, 10:43.56), Hickory’s Paige Griffith in the high jump (15th, 5-0) and Katie Feng of Grove City in the long jump (25th, 14-10 1/2).

Historic Hornet Honored

Barb Dzuricsko – a respected former Hickory athlete, track coach and athletic director – has been officially inducted into the Pennsylvania High School Athletics Hall of Fame. She received her plaque on the last day of the state meet, but news of her honor broke in January.

During her 29-year career with the Hickory track, she led the Hornets to 14 undefeated seasons, 17 Mercer County titles, eight District 10 championships and a PIAA 2A tag team championship in 2012. She amassed a 191-26 record while on course for Mercer County Hall of Fame membership.

Since leaving Hickory, Dzuricsko has remained active in the athletics community serving as a PIAA official.

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