LEWISTOWN - Carrying a long and strong tradition in track and field, the State College Little Lions arrived in Lewistown on Tuesday in the hopes of doing battle with a young and vastly improving Mifflin County team.
Despite the Little Lions depth and experience, the Husky boys gave them everything they could handle, coming within 20 points of the visitors in an 85-65 loss, while on the girls' side, Mifflin County fell 113-37.
"State College right now is the powerhouse in the conference,' Mifflin County coach Scott Gantz said. "We knew coming in we had our hands full. All we asked of our kids was to go out and give us the best they could. I think for the most part that's what we got."
Sentinel photo by MATT STRICKER
Mifflin County’s Darrien Knudsen stays ahead of State College’s Matt Beyerle in the 1,600-meter run Tuesday in Lewistown. Knudsen won the race.
Sentinel photo by MATT STRICKER
Mifflin County’s Makenna Pollock takes the baton from Hannah Winters in the 4x800-meter relay against State College.
One of the team's leaders, George Donahey, led by example as he posted first-place finishes in the pole vault (13 feet even) and the long jump (18-11 1/2).
Teammate Darrien Knudsen also took top honors in two of his events, posting a victory in 800-meter run with a 2:04.3 time, and in the 1,600-meter run, which he won in 4:31.5.
Mifflin County opened the night on the right foot for the boys as the 4x800-meter relay team finished first with a time of 8:52.9.
Others finishing first for Mifflin County on the day were Braden Treaster in the high jump (5-8), Zach Long in the javelin (151-3), Kyroon Carrington in 200-meter dash (23.1) and Malik Sechler rounded things out with a first in the triple jump (41-0).
Jordan Fisher and teammate Jared Michaels also had strong efforts capturing two second-place finishes each.
Fisher finished behind teammate Treaster in the high jump with a leap of 5-4. In the long jump, Fisher missed finishing with a share of the top spot by a foot and two inches with a leap of 17- 9 1/2.
Michaels finished with a second-place time of 44.5 in the 300-hurdles while also placing in the runner up spot with a leap of 39-5 in the triple jump.
Rounding out the second place finishers for the Huskies was Campbell Miller. Miller's 23.6 time in the 200 was bettered only by teammate Carrington.
"As far as top performers go, I was real proud of Kaleb Smith. Kaleb's coming around in the shot put for us and he had a nice night in the discus. Darrien Knudson PR'ed in the 1,600 and won the 800," Gantz noted. "We are starting to get kids that are performing in all areas and that's what its going to take come invitational time."
On the girls' side, Mifflin County had only three individuals finish in first place. Leading the way was Makala Rearick, who finished on top of the shot put with a throw of 35-8 1/2. Rearick also placed third in the discus, where she finished with a toss of 89-4.
Javelin thrower Grace Wagner finished in the top of the charts with a throw of 95-3.
On the track, Alexis Kibe was the lone winner for the girls, leading with a 13:09.9 time in the 3,200-meter run.
Multiple second place finishers for Mifflin County were Kelsie Kennedy and Maria Fowler.
With the losses, the boys dropped to 1-4 on the year while the girls fall to 2-3.
Mifflin County will take a contingent to Lock Haven University Saturday for the second of the college's two high school invitational meets. The Huskies' final Mid-Penn Conference dual meet is at Chambersburg April 29, and then Mifflin County gets a second look at State College, along with Altoona, at the West Central Coaches meet in early May.