New Castle News
NEW CASTLE —
Lawrence County girls shined in the field events at the WPIAL Championship.
Shenango High’s Amanda and Sarah Herb highlighted the participants, as the sister tandem scored top performances in the field.
The oldest of the two, Amanda, a senior, accomplished a state-qualifying standard at 38-11 in the shot put. It was a personal record for Herb, whose previous best was 38-3. Her distance was bested by Kailyn Clancy of California at a measure of 43-0.
Amanda added another medal with an eighth place in the discus, stretching the tape to 96-7.
“I’m really happy with my outcome,” Amanda Herb said. “I PR’d, that’s all I could really ask for.”
She will be making state for the third year in a row, and Herb has big goals in mind.
“I want to PR there, we have a week until we compete,” she said. “I would love to bring home a medal.”
Sarah Herb, a freshman, enjoyed watching her sister compete in the state competition the past two years.
Now, it’s her turn.
The younger of the two siblings picked up a third-place finish in the discus, tossing a result of 106-0. Clancy again claimed first in another event with a 112-5.
“I was always interested (in track and field),” Sarah said. “I came to her (Amanda’s) track meets when I was younger.
“It’s going to be fun (to go to state). I went with them in the past years, and I’m glad the hard work paid off.”
The Lady Wildcats’ Corie Palmer also clinched a state berth with a third-place effort in the pole vault at a height of 9-3. Apollo-Ridge’s Reannah Martin outdid the pack at 10-0.
The Herb sisters were two of four Lawrence County field standouts to place in the discus. The other two, Neshannock’s Anna Lisa Frengel and Sarah Davis, also punched their ticket to the PIAA event.
Frengel did it in the shot put, coming in third with a state-qualifying standard of 38-6. She placed sixth in the discus to earn her second medal at 101-6.
“My goal was to place in the top three,” she said of her shot put effort. “I got third, so I’ll take it.”
The Lady Lancers went to great lengths all season to be successful in this meet, and it looks like their dedication paid off.
“We lifted a lot, we were outside a lot all day, after school and we worked on the weekends,” Frengel said. “We really prepared for this.”
Frengel’s finish was an improvement on her fourth-place nod in last year’s event. She’s hoping to medal at state after placing ninth a year ago.
Davis will be making her first appearance at the state level after a fifth-place effort in the shot put at a distance of 103-3.
“I’m only in 10th grade,” she said, “I’m ready to compete at higher levels. We put in a ton of work out here in the winter doing a whole bunch of stuff, spending time after meets practicing. Everybody’s goal is to make it to state.”
On the track, Neshannock received a top-notch finish from Lizzie Manickas in the 3200. She plugged through the two-mile endurance run with a runner-up finish at a state-qualifying standard time of 11:22.39. Winchester Thurston’s Madeline Schmiedeknecht was first at 11:14.98.
Manickas is no stranger to qualifying for state in the 3200. She placed fourth in her freshman year and fourth again last year.
“Every year has just been to make it to the state meet,” she said. “I really don’t do anything different (to prepare for this event), it’s kind of like just the same training. I just have to run around a lot.”
Mohawk’s Maria Fleck hurdled her way to the PIAAs in two events. She made her mark with a fifth-place finish in the 100 hurdles at a state-qualifying standard of 15.87 and scored a third-place medal in the 300 hurdles at 45.88.
Shenango’s Nicole Watkins gave a visible indication of just what it means to succeed for the athletes participating in the championship event. After discovering her time of 60.52 was good enough for the fifth and a final state spot, Watkins was overcome with emotion at reaching her first PIAA competition.
“Oh my god, it feels amazing!” she proclaimed. “I am so relived. It was a big, big weight.”
The unique thing about Watkins running the 400 is her love-hate relationship with the event.
“I hate it. I hate it to this day. It’s the worst, but it’s what I’m good at,” she said. “It’s so challenging. It’s so much more work and pushing myself.”
Ellwood City’s Abbey Eisenbrown earned a spot at state with a qualifying standard of 11-3.
OTHERS WHO PLACED
In Class AA, the following local athletes earned a medal for placing in the top eight in an event — Mohawk’s Kim Masone (pole vault, sixth), 3200 relay (Katelyn Byers, Doreen Clark, Mackenzie Moon, Joelle Bromley), Nicole Shirilla (100 hurdles, seventh); Laurel’s Becca Jones (pole vault, sixth); Shenango’s Allyssa Allwine (long jump, seventh and high jump, eighth), 1600 relay (Angelina Sibeto, Allie Cardella, Watkins, Brielle Braun).
In Class AAA, the following local athlete earned a medal for placing in the top eight in an event — Ellwood City’s Angela McCowin (100 hurdles, eighth).
(For a complete list of results from the meet, check Friday’s print edition of The News.)