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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.
 Phone: 814-870-1700


Posts categorized "Track and field"
Posted: December 23rd, 2013

Runners with current ties to District 10 cross country swept the top three spots in the female open division at Sunday’s Miller Mistletoe Mile. The race was connected by Heard Park and Gibson Park in North East.

Villa Maria junior Grace Trucilla was the women’s overall gold medalist with an even time of 5 minutes, 51 seconds. Trucilla is a returning PIAA track champion for the Victors.

Second place went to Jeannette Boyd. The Union City girls cross country coach crossed the finish line in 6:02.3.

Third went to Taylor Pletz (6:10.3), who recently completed her junior cross country season at Mercyhurst Prep.

– Mike Copper

Posted: September 16th, 2013

McDowell boys tennis coach Richard Beck will have a difficult time disputing Chris Jiuliante’s endurance on the court when the Trojans begin practicing for their 2014 season.

Jiuliante was among the 978 runners who finished Sunday’s Erie Marathon at Presque Isle. The senior placed 10th overall and had the fastest time in the men’s 20-under age group at 2 hours, 53 minutes, 13 seconds

William Host, 19, of Clarksburg, W.Va., (3:27.32) was a distant second in that division.

– Mike Copper

Posted: September 4th, 2013

Harbor Creek High School will conduct ceremonies this weekend for its new athletic hall of fame inductees.

The 2013 class will be informally honored before and during Friday’s 7 p.m. football game between the Huskies and North East at Paul J. Weitz Stadium. The official ceremony will take place Saturday at 6 p.m. at the high school cafeteria.

Those scheduled for induction are Kristen DePlatchett (class of 1999), Don Dougan (1963), Missy Watson Grudi (1990), Steve Moorhead (1958), Lee Palloto (1950), David Uglow (1979), Heather Norder Weismiller (1994) and the late Norman Decker (1949).

Tickets are still available by calling (814) 897-2100, extension 1367, or by e-mail at

– Mike Copper

Posted: August 4th, 2013

Grace Trucilla, a junior-to-be at Villa Maria Academy, was the overall female champion of Saturday’s Dan Rice Days 5K.

Trucilla completed the Girard course in 19 minutes, 29 seconds. Blythe Cody, 32, of Girard was second at 21:55, with Ginny Sackett, 49, of Erie third at 22:17.

Trucilla capped her sophomore year at Villa with a gold medal in the PIAA Class AA track and field meet. She comprised a leg of the Victors’ 3,200-meter relay team, which won that event at Shippensburg University.

– Mike Copper

Posted: May 25th, 2013

Updates of District 10 entrants at Saturday’s PIAA track and field meet at Shippensburg University’s Seth Grove Stadium. The top eight entrants in each event will receive medals.

Earlier updates will appear in the previous entry section.

– Mike Copper

* The West Middlesex boys, with Clay Allen’s four event victories Saturday, clinched the AA team title for Saturday’s PIAA track and field meet. This is our final post for this site. Please check back Monday, when he provide updates from the District 10 softball finals at Penn State Behrend.

* Caleb Sanford’s elimination in the AAA boys pole vault means that District 10 will have won 12 different events for the 2013 PIAA track and field meet. They include Erie County champions in North East’s Ryan Smathers (AA boys 1,600), Northwestern’s Kyle McKeen (AA boys triple jump), Seneca’s Samantha Black (AA girls discus) and Villa Maria in the AA girls 3,200 relay.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: May 24th, 2013

District 10 updates from Friday’s PIAA track and field meet at Shippensburg University’s Seth Grove Stadium. The top eight entrants in each event will receive medals.

Earlier updates will appear in the previous entry section.

– Mike Copper

* We’re closing the blog for Friday’s competition, which included six PIAA champions from District 10. We’ll have similar coverage here all day Saturday.

* North East star runner Ryan Smathers, already the favorite to win Saturday’s AA boys 1,600, won his heat in the 800. His estimated time of 1:57.60 should be good enough to get him on the starting line for that final Saturday.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: May 23rd, 2013

Earlier this week, the Varsity blog listed District 10 athletes who are seeded among the top three in their events for this weekend’s PIAA championships in Shippensburg.

Today, we’ll take a look at all of D-10′s qualifiers and where they’re seeded for the state meet, which opens Friday and concludes Saturday.

District 10 has top seeds in seven events: North East’s Ryan Smathers, Class AA 1,600 meters; Hickory’s boys 400 relay, Class AA; West Middlesex’s Luke Patten, Class AA pole vault; Wilmington’s Jon Yohman, Class AA shot put; Cathedral Prep’s Malik Moffett, Class AAA high jump; Greenville’s Rebekah Petty, Class AA pole vault; Franklin’s Abby Jones, Class AAA high jump.

Check out the complete list of District 10 qualifiers and all performers with top seeds in each event:

Posted: May 19th, 2013

District 10 is in line for a solid showing at the two-day PIAA championship meet this coming weekend at Shippensburg University. Below are the performance sheets for all four meets.

Class AA boys
Class AAA boys
Class AA girls
Class AAA girls

Here are the District 10 athletes in the top three seeds heading into the final meet of the season:
Class AA boys
100 - 2. Clay Allen, West Middlesex (10.90); 3. DeShawn Coleman, Hickory (10.95) – Top seed is Jhaloni Johnson of Springfield (10.87)
1,600 - 1. Ryan Smathers, North East (4:17.13)
400 relay – 1. Hickory 42.52; 2. West Middlesex 42.75
200 - 2. Clay Allen, West Middlesex (22.46) – Top seed is Vincent Moody of Clairton (22.33)
Pole vault – 1. Luke Patten, West Middlesex (14-0)
Triple jump – 2. Johnathon Jacoway, Sharon (45-7 1/4); 3. Kyle McKeen, Northwestern (45-6 1/4) – Top seed is Daniel Reichenbach of Salisbury (46-11 1/4)
Shot put – 1. Jon Yohman, Wilmington (59-4 1/2); 3. Luke Lewis, Hickory (57-9)
Discus – 2. Jon Yohman, Wilmington (179-8); 3. Trevor Harrison, West Middlesex (160-9) – Top seed is Evan Arnott of Schuylkill Valley (182-4)

Class AAA boys
110 hurdles – 2. Greg Miaczynski, Central Tech (14.18) – Top seed is Wellington Zaza of Garnet Valley (13.86)
100 - 2. Malik Moffett, Cathedral Prep (10.91) – Top seed is Demetrius Lanier of East Stroudsburg South (10.82)
High jump – 1. Malik Moffett, Cathedral Prep (6-7)

Class AA girls
3,200 relay – 2. Villa Maria (9:29.51) – Top seed is Holy Redeemer (9:27.45)
800 – 3. Claire Brown, Villa Maria (2:15.59) – Top seed is Shannon Quinn of Trinity (2:14.73)
Pole vault – 1. Rebekah Petty, Greenville (12-8)
Shot put – 2. Rachel DeMaria, West Middlesex (41-3) – Top seed is Kailyn Clancy of California (43-0)
Discus – 2. Julie Falvo, Wilmington (127-4); 3. Samantha Black, Seneca (126-8) – Top seed is Carter Green of Northern Schuylkill (152-7)

Class AAA girls
High jump – 1. Abby Jones, Franklin (5-7)
Shot put – 2. Sophia Fustos, Hickory (43-9 3/4) – Top seed is Courtney McCartney of Selinsgrove (44-10 1/2)

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted in: PIAA, Track and field
Posted: May 17th, 2013

North East distance runner Ryan Smathers, seated, accepts his appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point in a ceremony at the North East library Monday. Smathers is joined by, from left, his mother, Gracie Smathers, North East track and field coach Dick Gregg, distance coach Ted Miller and his father, Cliff Smathers. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO


North East standout distance runner Ryan Smathers has accepted an appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point.

Smathers will attend the United States Military Academy Preparatory School for one year before heading to the Academy. He will run cross country and indoor and outdoor track.

Smathers has been a four-year star at North East in both cross country and track. He is the defending PIAA Class AA champion in the 1,600 meters and holds the District 10 record in that event.

By accepting the appointment, Smathers is making a 10-year commitment — one year at prep school, four years at the Academy and five years of active service.

Posted: May 16th, 2013

Region 3
Saegertown 11, Maplewood 0, 5 innings
Region 5
Franklin 12, Youngsville 2
Harbor Creek 9, North East 2
Mercyhurst Prep 10, Central Tech 0, 5 innings
Titusville 6, Mercyhurst Prep 2
General McLane 4, Union City 3
Reynolds 4, Grove City 1
Seneca 12, Iroquois 2, 5 innings
Cambridge Springs 13, Lakeview 12
Oil City 10, Strong Vincent 6
Cochranton 10, Conneaut 3

Region 1
Commodore Perry 17, Farrell 3, 5 innings
Region 3
Saegertown 8, Maplewood 4
Region 4
Fairview 6, General McLane 0
Northwestern 6, Girard 4
Harbor Creek 9, Seneca 3
North East 7, Villa Maria 6
Region 7
Fort LeBoeuf 2, McDowell 0
Strong Vincent 10, Mercyhurst Prep 0, 6 innings
Mercer 8, Grove City 7, 8 innings
Cambridge Springs 9, Lakeview 0
Cochranton 5, West Middlesex 0
Titusville 7, Jamestown 0
Union City 15, Venango Catholic 3, 5 innings
Wilmington 9, Hickory 4

Track and field
Region 4
Eisenhower def Seneca (boys)
Seneca def Eisenhower (girls)

Boys volleyball
Region 1
Cochranton def Maplewood 25-18, 25-19, 23-25, 25-14
McDowell def Farrell 25-14, 25-23, 25-15
Rocky Grove def Fort LeBoeuf 25-22, 25-21, 11-25, 25-21
Saegertown def Cambridge Springs 26-28, 25-19, 25-18, 25-17

–Tom Reisenweber

Posted: May 15th, 2013

Updates from Wednesday’s District 10 Class AAA track and field meet at Harbor Creek’s Paul J. Weitz Stadium. Earlier updates will appear in the previous entry section:

– Mike Copper

* Cathedral Prep, led by double winner Malik Moffett (high jump, 100 meters) won the boys title for the meet. Grove City didn’t claim the title until it captured the 1,600 relay finale.

Read the rest of this entry »

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