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By Mike Copper, Tom Reisenweber, Jeff Kirik Erie Times-News staff bloggers
The Varsity blog is the 2013 winner of an international EPPY award for best sports blog. EPPYs are awarded to media-affiliated websites by Editor & Publisher, an industry trade publication. Varsity is primarily maintained by Times-News sports writers Mike Copper and Tom Reisenweber and sports editor Jeff Kirik.   Read more about this blog.
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Posts categorized "Track and field"
Posted: July 20th, 2014

Recent high school graduates Chris Jiuliante of McDowell and Raven Clark of Villa Maria were among more than 1,100-plus runners who completed Sunday’s Presque Isle Half Marathon.

The 13.1-mile race comprised one loop around Presque Isle State Park.

Jiuliante, who didn’t take up competitive running until last year, placed second in the boys age 19-under division with a time of 1 hour, 23 minutes, 20.2 seconds. He trailed only former Cathedral Prep standout John Lacy (1:22.43.8) in that bracket.

Clark was 16th (1:56.25.2) in the girls 19-under division. She was a member of Villa’s 3,200-meter relay team which received gold medals in that event at the 2013 PIAA Class AA track and field meet.

– Mike Copper

Posted: July 19th, 2014

Two of District 10′s best returning runners were the overall champions of Saturday’s North East Cherry Festival 5K.

Mercyhurst Prep student Sebastian Curtin was first across the finish line with a low time of 16 minutes, 14 seconds. North East rival Gary Olson placed fourth and took first place in the men’s age 14-19 division at 16:51.

Noah Curtin, Sebastian’s younger brother and another returning Laker, was second to Olson in that bracket at 16:56.

Grace Trucilla of Villa Maria was the race’s fastest female. The former PIAA track and field gold medalist returned in 19:13.

– Mike Copper

Posted: July 4th, 2014

During the 10 years since District 10 realigned into regions, the Erie Times-News has been selecting athletes of the year in each District 10 sport.

Here’s a look at all of the spring athletes of the year during the past 10 years: (Look for the winter athletes Saturday and the fall athletes Sunday on the Varsity blog.)

Baseball
2004-05: Shawn Valenly, Sharpsville
2005-06: Chris Hyde, Northwestern
2006-07: Bob Revesz, Grove City
2007-08: Jaymee Shephard, Hickory
2008-09: Addison Dunn, Warren
2009-10: T.J. Mitchell, Mercyhurst Prep
2010-11: Jeff Revesz, Grove City
2011-12: Steve Sada, Saegertown
2012-13: Adam Bleday, Titusville
2013-14: Zach Guth, Franklin

Softball
2004-05: Allison Hasbrouck, Corry
2005-06: Danielle Chase, Iroquois
2006-07: Becky Zill, Iroquois
2007-08: Ali Grab, Villa Maria
2008-09: Becky Zill, Iroquois
2009-10: Cari Conway, Wilmington
2010-11: Kelli Rohan, McDowell
2011-12: Raven Rozantz, Fairview
2012-13: Raven Rozantz, Fairview and Amanda Krolczyk, Fort LeBoeuf
2013-14: Alexa Bupp, Warren

Boys track and field
2004-05: Jed Christiansen, Greenville
2005-06: Cody Cipalla, Northwestern
2006-07: Zach Dow, Corry
2007-08: Dan Kwiatkowski, McDowell
2008-09: Sam Havko, Fairview
2009-10: Alex Beardsley, North East
2010-11: Jacob Kildoo, Grove City
2011-12: Ryan Smathers, North East
2012-13: Clay Allen, West Middlesex
2013-14: Luke Lewis, Hickory

Girls track and field
2004-05: Nicole Smith, McDowell
2005-06: Natalie Clickett, Union City and Amanda Seigworth, Northwestern
2006-07: Ajla Glavasevic, McDowell
2007-08: Kristy Woods, Grove City
2008-09: Lauren Zarger, Harbor Creek
2009-10: Emily Woods, Hickory
2010-11: Morgan Richards, Hickory
2011-12: Lauren Lubarski, Hickory
2012-13: Rebekah Petty, Greenville
2013-14: Emily Campbell, Slippery Rock

Boys volleyball
2004-05: Tyler Mattera, Conneaut Valley
2005-06: Jordan Varee, Conneaut Valley
2006-07: Robert Cierniakoski, Maplewood
2007-08: Ben Wetsell, Saegertown
2008-09: Nick Bancroft, Maplewood
2009-10: Adam Barba, Meadville
2010-11: Dave Rion, McDowell
2011-12: Alex Minnis, Meadville
2012-13: Shane Rigby, Saegertown
2013-14: Logan Herzberger, Cochranton

Boys tennis
2004-05: Derek Taylor, Keith Whittingham, McDowell
2005-06: Kevin Riley, Fairview
2006-07: Jeff Nuhfer, Warren
2007-08: Landon Williams, McDowell
2008-09: Landon Williams, McDowell
2009-10: Landon Williams, McDowell
2010-11: Alex Brzozowski, Cathedral Prep
2011-12: Alex Brzozowski, Mario Nicolia, Cathedral Prep
2012-13: Nick Ward, Cathedral Prep
2013-14: Nick Donovan, McDowell

Boys lacrosse:
2011-12: Ben Lorei, McDowell
2012-13: Josh Baronner, McDowell
2013-14: Hunter Emerson, Cathedral Prep

Girls lacrosse:
2011-12: Jen Hartmann, McDowell
2012-13: Erin Gleason, Fairview
2013-14: Alex Zielinski, McDowell

Posted: June 25th, 2014

Several District 10 track and field athletes traveled to the New Balance Nationals track and field outdoor meet recently held at North Carolina A&T University in Greensburg, N.C. Franklin senior-to-be Abby Jones finished third in the high jump by clearing 5 feet, 7 3/4 inches. She won the meet last year but Bailey Weiland from Atlanta won the title by clearing 5-11 1/2. Jones has three PIAA silver medals and two medals from the national meet. North East’s Grayson Hill also placed by taking seventh in the emerging elite boys javelin. His best throw was 157 feet, 4 inches as Preston Elwell from Signal Mountain (Tenn.) won the event at 173-8.

The final medalist from D-10 was Hickory junior Cailen Blaire in the emerging elite hammer throw. She had a throw of 136 feet, 8 inches to place eighth, while Taniya Mitchell of Mt. Vernon (N.Y.) won with a distance of 161-1. Blaire also competed in the emerging elite shot put and placed 27th with a distance of 36 feet, 11 1/2 inches. Villa Maria’s Grace Trucilla ran in the girls 800 and finished in 20th. Trucilla finished with a time of 2 minutes, 12.75 seconds and the winning time of 2:04.88 was from Raevyn Rogers from Houston.

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted in: Track and field
Posted: June 11th, 2014

Alexa Efraimson put on a show at the Washington state track and field championships recently when she finished the 1,600 in 4 minutes, 33.29 seconds according to the Seattle Times. She eclipsed the national record of 4:33.82 set in 2008 by Woodbride (Calif.) standout Christine Babcock. It wasn’t a fluke by Efraimson either. In the fall, she won the Gatorade national girls cross country runner of the year award after breaking the course record at the Nike cross country nationals with a time of 16:50.1. In the spring, Efraimson owns the top 1,600 time as well as the 3,200 (9:55.92) and is in the top 15 in the 800 (2:06.03).

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted in: Track and field
Posted: June 10th, 2014

PIAA track and field state champions Emily Campbell and Luke Lewis headline the District 10 members of the Pennsylvania Track and Field Coaches Association all-state teams. The all-state teams take into consideration honors won, quality and consistency of performance and head-to-head competition. Campbell won the girls Class AA state title in the discus and took fifth in the shot put to be named to the first team, while Lewis won the Class AA boys state championship in the shot put and took second in the discus to also be named to the first team.

General McLane’s Bethany Evankovich won the Class AA girls 400 state title and was named to the third team along with McDowell standouts Daniel Commey (long jump) and Caleb Sanford (pole vault). Abby Jones of Franklin was placed on the girls second team in the high jump, and Hickory’s Elena Marchand was named to the honorable mention team in the shot put.

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted in: Track and field
Posted: June 1st, 2014

Villa Maria runner Grace Trucilla, in her first competition since the PIAA track and field meet at Shippensburg, traveled even farther across the state for last Friday’s John Hay Memorial Pennsylvania Distance Festival. The ninth annual event was held at West Chester Henderson High School.

Trucilla had the best result for any scholastic female runner in the mixed 800 meters. The junior finished 28th overall with a time of 2 minutes, 10.56 seconds. Her seed time was 2:15.03.

Matt Logie, an unattached male runner, was the winner with a low time of 1:57.44.

Trucilla helped Villa place second in the Class AA girls 3,200 relay final at the state meet. She was a gold medalist for that race in 2013.

– Mike Copper

Posted: May 31st, 2014

Markeeta Thomas helped District 12 Paul Robeson High School win the PIAA Class AA girls team trophy by sweeping the finals of the meet’s 100- and 300-meter hurdles. She set a state record in the former when she crossed the finish line in 14.13 seconds at Shippensburg University’s Seth Grove Stadium.

Two other new PIAA standards were set during last weekend’s competition.

Central Bucks South lowered the Class AAA girls mark in the 3,200 relay to 8:51.49. In Class AAA boys, Ross Wilson of Council Rock North chopped more than two seconds off the former individual 3,200 record with his time of 8:56.29.

– Mike Copper

Posted in: PIAA, Track and field
Posted: May 30th, 2014

Erie County claimed three male pole vault medalists by the end of last weekend’s PIAA track and field championships.

McDowell’s Caleb Sanford was the silver medalist for the Class AAA competition, with General McLane’s Hunter Truitt sixth on the podium at Shippensburg University’s Seth Grove Stadium. Fairview’s Damion Owens came in fifth after the Class AA entrants were through with their attempts.

Owens didn’t contend with the kinds of crosswinds that challenged Sanford and Truitt the day before, but did overcome serious injuries in past seasons just to make it to states. He had to recover from a broken arm and an ACL tear before returning to the strenuous discipline.

“It’s been a tough four years that I’ve had,” Owens said. “It feels good to get back to where I know I can be.”

– Mike Copper

Posted: May 27th, 2014

When Bethany Evankovich won last Saturday’s Class AA girls 400-meter final at the PIAA track and field meet, she became General McLane’s first female champion in 21 years.

Evankovich circled the track at Shippensburg University’s Seth Grove Stadium in a low time of 56.05 seconds. In doing so, the sophomore became the Lancers’ first state gold medalist since Jennifer Woodland.

The mention of Woodland’s name is likely to evoke bittersweet memories in older residents of the Edinboro area.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: May 24th, 2014

* General McLane sophomore Bethany Evankovich won the PIAA Class AA girls 400 gold medal with a time of 56.05 seconds.

District 10 updates from Saturday’s PIAA track and field meet at Shippensburg University’s Seth Grove Stadium. Competition will start at 9 a.m.

The top eight entrants in each event will receive medals.

Earlier updates will appear in the previous entry section.

– Mike Copper

* The 2014 PIAA track and field season is officially over. Besides the Hickory boys in second, the Hickory girls placed sixth in the Class AAA girls standings. McDowell finished in a three-way tie for 12th in the Class AAA boys.

* Villa Maria placed sixth in the Class AA girls team standings. Paul Robeson High School took home that trophy.

* The Hickory boys, with great assistance from throwers Luke Lewis and Austin Aikins, tied with District 12 Delaware Valley Charter for second place in the Class AA boys team standings. Each had 32 points to the 38 of District 1 Springfield Township.

Read the rest of this entry »

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