State College sits atop the District 6 big schools (AAA and AAAA) like the 'Emerald City.'
It gobbles up district titles in all sports like it was just another day on the yellow brick road.
But, on Saturday that all changed, at least in one portion of the district cross-country meet.
For a change, the bright lights were shining on the Mifflin County male runners.
Not many people thought the Huskies were going to pull off the win. State College had beaten Mifflin County in the Big Valley Invitational, in a dual meet and the Mid-Penn Conference showdown.
There might have been only one person, who thought Mifflin County could pull it off and that was the most important person of all, Ruth Yoder, the Mifflin County coach.
After the Mid-Penn meet in mid-October, she flat out said, "I think we can pull this off. Three things have to go right for us. We have to run the best meet of our lives, we have to get help from Altoona and we have to break up their (State College) pack."
And on Saturday, all three of those things happened. Jon Colwell and Addison Monroe (both seniors) did what they always do, run well.
But, it was the last scorers, Patrick Parker, Darien Knudsen and Cullen Russler, who put the final stamp on the district title.
Parker and Russler are both seniors and both finished their district careers in fine fashion. Both had the best runs of their lives. Knudsen, a sophomore, was right in between Parker and Russler.
Last year, Mifflin County helped Altoona win the district title by breaking up the State College pack. This time it was the Mountain Lions repaying the favor.
Parker, Knudsen, Russler and an Altoona runner finished between State College's third and fourth runners.
Colwell, who has been to two other state meets as an individual participant, was smiling all the way to the trophy presentation.
"I was so happy that we were going as a team that I forgot that I won the race," he said.
The senior has had a rough two weeks as he bruised his foot during the Mid-Penn conference race.
"I was feeling it (pain) before the race," Colwell said. "And I thought it might go away during the race, but it didn't. I figured I better run fast and get off of it as soon as possible."
And run fast he did, enough to win the race and join his father, Mark, as a district winner.
Sometimes the sports cliche, "It's a team effort," is over used. This time, it wasn't. All seven runners: Colwell, Chris Falkner, Knudsen, Monroe, Parker, Cullen and Trent Yoder, made it happen.
And unlike most years, Mifflin County found a way to reach the 'Emerald City', the place that always seems so far away.
And just like in the Wizard of Oz, the good witch told Mifflin County to tap its running shoes three times and go home a champion.
Ray Wilde is a sentinel correspondent.