The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Sports

April 25, 2014

Forest Hills girls capture team title

Loysburg — Rainy weather conditions with occasional wind gusts kept the times, jumps and throws from coming close to many records on Friday at the 10th annual Northern Bedford Track and Field Invitational held at Panther Community Stadium.

But the Forest Hills girls overcame the weather and the competition to claim the team title. The Rangers won just four events, including a pair of victories in the 1600 and 3200 by freshman Tricia Varner, but they also placed several competitors in nearly every event.

The Sidman squad finished with 1281/3 points. Windber was a distant second with 71 points while Berlin Brothersvalley (68), Southern Fulton (54) and Tussey Mountain (49) rounded out the top five in the 18-team field.

Varner, who won the 1600 in 5:37.35 and the 3200 in 12:13.56, said that her cross country experience and competing at Bedford’s Giant Eagle Invitational helped prepare her for Friday’s meet.

“The weather wasn’t really that good and I wasn’t real happy with my times, but I still won so that’s good,” Varner said. “I ran a little better in the 3200 because it wasn’t raining and the weather was a little better for that.”

The freshman said that her cross country training really helped prepare her for track season. “The hills help because then you run on the flat track and it seems much easier,” Varner said.

The Rangers’ Brooke Novotny won the 100 hurdles in 17.32 while teammate Jordan McIntosh was second. McIntosh was also second in the 300 hurdles just behind her Rangers’ teammate Kaitlyn Kline, who ran a 49.99.

“We have a pretty big team and we all work together to accomplish our goal,” Varner said. “We’re like a big family.”

Other area girls’ winners included Bedford’s Katie Lippincott in the triple jump (33 feet, 2 1/2 inches) and the high jump (4-9). Lippincott dashed out after her events in order to attend Bedford’s prom.

Berlin Brothersvalley’s Ellie Fleegle won the javelin throw with a toss of 109 feet and teammate Gina Trulick won the 800 in 2:31.63.

Chestnut Ridge senior Amanda Kostryk bettered her seeded height by 3 inches to win the rain-delayed pole vault competition with a jump of 8-9. Lions teammate Emily Finnegan was the winner in the discus with a toss of 92-9.

Windber’s foursome of Annalee Tokarsky, Kaitlin Weaver, Lauren Vasas and Cate McClain won the 3200 relay in a time of 10:51.53.

In the boys’ competition, Windber finished second with 78 points, just behind host Northern Bedford, which had 81. Bedford was third with 61 while Chestnut Ridge (42) and Hancock, Md., (41) rounded out the top five.

The 3200 relay unit of Windber’s Austin Leonardis, Dan Tomlinson, Kevin Charney and Devon Tomlinson is looking for a three-peat to the PIAA Track and Field championships. For now, the foursome continues to work together and try to improve on their times.

“Obviously the weather conditions weren’t great so we just came out looking to win,” Devon Tomlinson said. “Once you get into the atmosphere and get around the other teams and get into the tent, it’s just give it all of your heart.”

Devon Tomlinson, who also claimed the victory in the 400 in 52.18, said that even though the Ramblers were out in front for the whole race, they still had to remain focused.

“It’s determination,” Devon Tomlinson said. “We all know what we have to do to get the job done even when we are out ahead that much.”

Charney won the 800 in 2:05.02 and the Ramblers’ 1600 relay unit of Gray Bryan, Jared Maurizio, Leonardis and Dan Tomlinson won in 3:38.27. Conemaugh Township’s Jake Formica was a double winner with the fast time of 11.85 to capture the 100 and also then won the 200 (23.63).

Bedford’s William Kachman claimed the victory in the 3200 in 10:03.98 while Dakota Kauffman of Chestnut Ridge was the boys’ pole vault winner, clearing 11-0.

Notes: The only meet record was in the boys javelin toss as Williamsburg senior Michael Biddle had a winning throw of 182-4. … Northern Bedford senior Blake Over won four events, all three jumps and 110 hurdles.

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