Toney prevails after unusual sequence
There was Altoona’s Treyvaun Toney, running the 300 hurdles by himself after all the other events were completed.
It was a fitting culmination to a strange District 6 Class 3A Track and Field Championship Meet for area boys on Thursday at an unseasonably hot Mansion Park.
The meet produced five gold medalists from the area, and Toney — who eventually triumphed in both hurdle races — was the only one who was a top seed. Altoona’s Daiquain Watson came from the second seed to edge Hollidaysburg’s Kyle Lindsey in the high jump after the second-seeded Lindsey upset him in the long jump. Meanwhile, Brad Weatherwalk turned in a surprising victory for Altoona in the discus.
The Mountain Lions ran second to State College in the team race, their 180 points 5.5 behind the Little Lions. Event champions and performers who reached a predetermined PIAA qualifying standard will compete again in next weekend’s PIAA meet in Shippensburg — Altoona pole vaulter Tyler Delozier advanced by achieving that standard, as did the Lions’ 400-meter relay.
Years from now, though, they’ll probably be talking about this meet as the one Toney ran alone.
“It feels really good, honestly. I’ll never forget this moment,” Toney said, finally managing a smile through his fatigue after he won the 300-meter hurdles with a time of 41.90 seconds.
In a bizarre turn of events, Toney actually ran the 300s twice. The first time, he and State College’s Chase Longenecker were neck-and-neck coming to the end, with Toney appearing to be on the verge of overtaking the Little Lion.
With about 25 meters left, both hit the hurdle. Longenecker, though, fell into Toney, knocking the Altoona runner into the sixth lane. Toney got up, stumbled, then threw his head back, apparently realizing he probably was going to be disqualified with Longenecker for running outside his lane. Toney regained his composure and finished well behind Mifflin County’s Michael Tate.
“I don’t give up. So when I fell, I said to myself, ‘Get up, it doesn’t matter.’ When I fell again, I said, ‘Get up, it doesn’t matter.’ And when I fell again, I said it again, ‘Get up, it doesn’t matter,'” Toney said. “Until I crossed the line, I wasn’t giving up.”
However, Toney’s meet nor his quest for a second ticket to states weren’t done — because neither was the 300. After officials conferred for several minutes, they gave both Toney and Tate the option to run the race again after the final scheduled event of the night.
Tate declined. Toney, with no real other option, ran it again, all by himself.
“I just knew what I had to do, and that was run my race, no matter what,” Toney said.
It was enough. With teammates and Altoona fans cheering for him, he finished two-tenths of a second faster than Tate and was declared the event champion.
“I was focused on trying to stay loose, because I was already tired on the first one,” Toney said. “If I was stiff, I’d have had a bad time.”
Toney’s seeded time was 39.94.
“I was a little disappointed, because I thought I was going to get the record today,” Toney said. “But things happen for a reason.”
Toney overcame a bloody knee that he noticed after descending the awards stand following his victory in the 110-meter hurdles to emerge as a double gold medalist. Toney’s 15.63 in the 110s outpaced Tate by a quarter of a second. He was one of just two competitors to post a sub-16-second time in the trials, turning in a 15.97.
“I was really excited (at winning the 110s), because the seedings were really close,” Toney said, “so I really had to push hard and focus. That’s just what I did, and I came out in first place.”
Watson’s meet was unusual to stay the least. Moments after he received a third-place medal for the triple jump, the disc ripped free of the ribbon and fell to the artificial turf as Watson looked on, stunned.
Watson and Lindsey finished tied for the top height in the high jump, both achieving 6 feet, 3 inches. However, Watson climbed to the top spot on the awards podium, because he had fewer misses on the way to getting there.
“It feels good, but I wanted to go (to states) in at least three (events),” said Watson, who’ll be looking to add to his three career PIAA medals. “But I’m ready.”
Watson was rebounding from a loss to Lindsey in the long jump which could have been demoralizing. Instead, it was energizing.
“It actually brought momentum to me, to know that I should have (qualified in the long jump). I couldn’t be down,” Watson said. “So I just went out there. It brought momentum to me so I could compete better.”
Watson also qualified as the anchor of Altoona’s four-by-100 relay. The Mountain Lions finished second to Johnstown, which posted a 42.29, but they met the state-qualifying standard by finishing in 42.95 — the state cutoff was 43.25.
Connor Adams, Mitchell Lawhead and Kurt VonColln ran the first three legs.
“I love to see my team competing. I don’t like when my team is out,” Watson said. “I like that we’re going to be competing (together) for an extra week.”
Watson looked at the upside of things: Only being in two events gave him more of an opportunity to concentrate on those and more recovery time. It might pay off with a couple of more medals next weekend.
“It actually will be perfect,” Watson said. “The way it went last year, high jump was latter in the day, and four-by-one’s in the beginning. I have more rest than competing in three or four events, so it actually works for me.”
Lindsey jumped a personal-record 22 feet on his third attempt, 5 inches beyond his next best jump of the day and 3 inches farther than the top-seeded Watson.
“It’s the last meet of the year. I just left it all out there,” Lindsey said. “It’s always been a goal of mine to reach the 22 mark. I just finally went out and did it.”
Lindsey and Watson have had a spirited competition in the jumps this year. For Lindsey, this was just a case of putting things together at the right time.
“It was just finally getting down the proper steps and good technique in the pit,” Lindsey said.
A long jumper since ninth grade, the Golden Tiger senior said the gold medal in the long jump was a culmination of a dream. Coming into the year, his best distance was 21-2.
“I was just chasing that (22-foot mark) every year, trying to get better,” Lindsey said. “I final got it.”
Weatherwalk has been throwing the discus for four years, mostly following in the footsteps of a grandfather who was a standout thrower at Hollidaysburg and uncle Michael Hook, the late former Altoona performer who died in a helicopter crash in Iraq about 10 years ago.
“My parents were telling me that he was a discus thrower and shot put thrower, and he did really well here,” Weatherwalk said. “I hope I make him proud.”
Perhaps Weatherwalk had a bit of divine help. Weatherwalk entered the meet seeded second in the discus, and, while his best throw of 145-2 was about 7 feet away from a personal record, it still was good enough to win gold by almost 5 feet. Bellefonte’s James Boland finished as runner-up.
“Honestly, I wasn’t here to place third, second or first. I was just here for my personal record,” Weatherwalk said. “I didn’t care who was seeded first, second or third. I came here to beat my personal record. I didn’t do it, but I was close, and I’m very happy. I’ve been working for three years trying to place in districts. Finally, I’ve placed first for discus. It’s been a long time since Altoona’s had a champion discus thrower.”
Weatherwalk finished fifth last year. He threw a career-best 152-2 at Lock Haven Classic meet this year.
“I just listened to my coach tell me to sit down and relax, wait until I’m ready to throw and just give a toss,” Weatherwalk said of the key to his winning throw on Thursday.
Weatherwalk wasn’t setting any goals for the state meet. He just intended to go out and do his best.
“I’m just going to see what happens. I really don’t care if I make it into the finals. I’m just glad I made it this far,” Weatherwalk said.
The No. 1 seed, Delozier was upset by Luke Knipe in the pole vault, but his height of 14-3 still allowed him to advance to the state meet as the District 6 runner-up. Knipe almost tacked a foot on to his personal-best mark of the season, vaulting 14-9.
Delozier still should be a factor at states. He vaulted 15-0 at the West Central Coaches Meet earlier this month.
Meet notes: Altoona’s Dylan Allen was presented the $500 Angie Gioiosa Scholarship Award. … AWatson and Hollidaysburg’s Bronson Woodling were the male recipients of the Blair County Chapter of Track and Field Officials Outstanding Performer Awards.
(Top finisher plus those achieving state qualifying standard advance to PIAA championships).
KEY, TEAM SCORING: 1, SC–State College, 185.5; 2, A–Altoona, 180; 3, MC–Mifflin County, 115; 4, H–Hollidaysburg, 70; 5, B–Bellefonte, 44; 6, J–Johnstown, 43; 7, SOM–Somerset, 40; 8, CM–Central Mountain, 12.5.
100 dash (11.10): 1, Loe, J, 11.13; 2, Russell, SC, 11.36; 3, Barron, SOM, 11.42; 4, Berkins, J, 11.43; 5, Wolford, H, 11.49; 6, Ellis, SC, 11.73; 7, Sechler, MC, 11.77; 8, Adams, A, 11.86.
200 dash (22.50): 1, Simon, J, 22.66; 2, Russell, SC, 23.06; 3, Lawhead, A, 23.15; 4, Sechler, MC, 23.43; 5, Ealy, SC, 23.56; 6, Barron, SOM, 23.61; 7, Wolford, H, 24.01; 8, Ellis, SC, 40.42.
400 dash (50.09): 1, Oesterling, SC, 50.63; 2, VonColln, A, 51.45; 3, Hovis, B, 52.09; 4, Russell, SC, 52.22; 5, Mercer, A, 54.32; 6, Henry, A, 55.28; 7, Suydam, MC, 55.53; 8, Hockenbury, SC, 56.65.
800 run (1:57.32): 1, N. Feffer, SC, 1:54.50; 2, Phillips, MC, 1:55.22; 3, J. Feffer, SC, 1:58.30; 4, DiPerna, SC, 2:00.71; 5, Cowan, A, 2:00.78; 6, Walker, SOM, 2:01.42; 7, Boutiller, A, 2:06.14; 8, Riccardo, CM, 2:06.19.
1600 run (4:24.22): 1, Wing, SC, 4:23.09; 2, Macknair, MC, 4:23.55; 3, Branstetter, SC, 4:37.40; 4, Williams, A, 4:39.93; 5, Boutiller, A, 4:46.25; 6, St. Pierre, SC, 4:50.24; 7, Miller, MC, 4:57.77; 8, Green, CM, 4:59.39.
3200 run (9:31.71): 1, Etter, SC, 9:32.10; 2, Macknair, MC, 9:50.21; 3, Pope, B, 5:59.85; 4, Isham, SC, 10:00.21; 5, Williams, A, 10:26.15; 6, Unger, MC, 10:35.77; 7, Henninger, A, 10:42.91; 8, Hoaglund, B, 10:47.72.
110 hurdles (15.10): 1, Toney, A, 15.63; 2, Tate, MC, 15.88; 3, Montano, H, 15.93; 4, McClellan, A, 16.34; 5, Harr, A, 16.50; 6, Holoviak, SC, 16.82; 7, Howell, SC, 18.11; 8, Longenecker, SC, 20.17.
300 hurdles (39.80): 1, Toney, A, 41.90; 2, Tate, MC, 42.10; 3, Brown, A, 42.87; 4, Harr, A, 43.58; 5, Troll, SOM, 43.71; 6, Holoviak, SC, 44.01; 7, Sinkus, MC, 45.11; 8, Montano, H, 45.61.
400 relay (43.25): 1, Johnstown (Berkins, Simon, Tinsley, Loe), 42.29; 2, Altoona (Adams, Lawhead, VonColln, Watson), 42.95; 3, State College, 43.35; 4, Hollidaysburg, 45.02; 5, Somerset, 45.13; 6, Central Mountain, 45.87; 7, Mifflin County, 46.02.
1600 relay (3:24.03): 1, State College (Oesterling, Longenecker, J. Feffer, N. Feffer), 3:28.32; 2, Altoona, 3:35.57; 3, Hollidaysburg, 3:40.14; 4, Somerset, 3:45.37; 5, Mifflin County, 3:46.02; 6, Bellefonte, 3:49.97; 7, Central Mountain, 3:55.82.
3200 relay (8:02.04): 1, State College (DiPerna, J. Feffer, N. Feffer, Wing), 8:36.73; 2, Altoona, 8:43.47; 3, Hollidaysburg, 8:47.56; 4, Mifflin County, 8:58.62.
High jump (6-5): 1, Watson, A, 6-3; 2, Lindsey, H, 6-3; 3, Givler, H, 6-1; 4, Fisher, 5-11; 5, Rogers, H, 5-9; 6, Peters, J, 5-9; 7, Hamilton, SC, 5-7; 8, Tinsley, J, 5-7.
Long jump (22-0): 1, Lindsey, H, 22-0; 2, Watson, A, 21-9; 3, Clark, SC, 21-1.25; 4, Adams, A, 20-9; 5, Russo, A, 20-7.5; 6, Rogers, H, 20-7.25; 7, Fisher, MC, 20-4.75; 8, Hamilton, SC, 20-4.
Triple jump (45-0): 1, Clark, SC, 46-6.25; 2, Hamilton, SC, 45-3.25; 3, Watson, A, 43-7.75; 4, Fernandez, B, 43-0.75; 5, Sechler, MC, 42-5.75; 6, Green, A, 42-1.5; 7, Wagner, A, 42-0; 8, Basal, H, 41-1.25.
Shot put (52-0): 1, Hyde, SOM, 50-4.5; 2, Bennett, MC, 46-10; 3, Tofano, A, 45-3.75; 4, Kroell, B, 44-7; 5, Thompson, SC, 43-3.5; 6, Hughey, A, 42-9; 7, Reed, MC, 42-2.5; 8, Gaus, B, 41-10.75.
Discus (153-0): 1, Weatherwalk, A, 145-2; 2, Boland, B, 140-7; 3, Thompson, SC, 140-7; 4, Hyde, SOM, 140-0; 5, Tofano, A, 131-9; 6, Woodring, H, 131-4; 7, Reed, MC, 130-1; 8, Bennett, MC, 129-0.
Javelin (178-0): 1, Shoemaker, MC, 163-6; 2, Wagner, MC, 162-10; 3, Sheaffer, MC, 159-0; 4, Thompson, SC, 156-10; 5, Simms, J, 153-9; 6, Boland, B, 149-10; 7, Haines, CM, 146-8; 8, Folcarelli, A, 146-7.
Pole vault (14-3): 1,Knipe, SC, 14-9 ; 2, Delozier, A, 14-3; 3, Wert, SC, 13-3; 4, Byrnes, H, 11-3; 5 (tie), Brucker, SC, and Moore, CM, 10-9; 7, Shunk, A, 10-9; 8, DeAngelis, A, 10-9.
State qualifying standard in parentheses.