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AAHS boys enjoy strong start to season

Adams brothers not promoting long jump rivalry

Photo for the Mirror by Chuck Meyers Altoona’s Connor Adams runs a leg of the winning 400-meter relay.

The 2019 Altoona Area High School boys track and field team boasts several standout seniors this year that have raised their expectations.

They’re not going to let any young newcomer show them up, even if it’s a teammate or even if it’s a younger brother.

Asked who the teammate with the same last name was that finished second to him in the long jump on Saturday, Altoona senior Connor Adams was quick to snuff out any speculation.

“That’s my brother, Jake, a ninth grader,” Connor said. “It was a little strange (competing against him), but he’s not going to beat me.”

Connor, a 2018 Class 3A state qualifier, won the long jump in the 43rd Altoona Igloo Invitational at Mansion Park with a distance of 21 feet, 6.25 inches. Younger brother Jake finished second but was more than 1 foot back at 20-4.5.

“He’s not going to get close to me,” Connor said when pressed on whether Jake will be able to close the gap on him as the season progresses.

Truth be told, Jake isn’t planning on spoiling Connor’s senior season.

“I guess it’s like a rivalry, but he’s so much older and better than me,” Jake said. “He knows a lot more about (jumping) than I do.”

The Adams brothers were just two of several Mountain Lions that had their father, Altoona boys coach Mike Adams, feeling good after the first big meet of the 2019 season.

Altoona won four individual events and swept the three relays in the non-scoring team event that was canceled last year due to icy conditions.

Connor Adams was part of the 400-meter relay team with fellow seniors Isaiah Barnes, Kurt VonColln and Mitchell Lawhead that won in 42.96 seconds, junior K.J. Futrell joined VonColln, Barnes and Lawhead to win the 1600 relay in 3:37.31, and Jack Hatch, Gage Reid, Gary Hooper and Ayden Summers won the 3200 relay in 8:30.85.

In addition, Lawhead won the 200 dash, Barnes won the 110 hurdles, and Altoona senior Mike Folcarelli placed first in the javelin. Other area winners included Hollidaysburg senior Trent Howe in the 100 and 400 dashes, and Bedford sophomore Van May in the 3200 run.

The Altoona 400 relay’s performance might have been the most pleasing to Coach Adams, who won a PIAA gold medal in the event his senior year. He said Saturday’s time of 42.96 seconds was the best in the state so far this year.

“We love the relays,” Coach Adams said. “We’re really happy with the start of the season, and we’re right where we want to be. The (400 relay) — they’re four seniors, all back from last year who finished 10th at states, so they’re hungry. Their goal is to go down there (to Shippensburg in late May) and win that thing.”

Lawhead, who has signed to play football at Lehigh, qualified for states last year in the 200 dash and got things started Saturday with a first-place finish time of 23.56.

“This year I’m really focused on the 200,” Lawhead said. “There were some schools here today with good sprinters who definitely pushed me. State College always has a good program, so I’ll (eventually) have to deal with one of those kids (at districts), but I’ll prepare myself for that.”

Barnes wasn’t pushed too hard in the 110 hurdles, winning by nearly 1 second, but he was a little disappointed top-seeded Jaron Ambrose of Bradford did not compete.

“Unfortunately, the top seed from Bradford wasn’t here,” Barnes said. “His teammates were telling me about him and talking some trash. But I just went out and ran my best.”

Folcarelli is the defending District 6 Class 3A champ in the javelin, but he already eclipsed his district winning throw of 172 feet with a throw of 183-3 in his first competition of the season.

“It feels good; I worked hard during the offseason,” Folcarelli said. “I threw a lot and went to a couple of camps — stuff like that. The goal this year is 200 (feet). I think it’s a possibility that I can do it.”

Howe joined Deer Lakes’ Josh Yourish (800 and 1600 runs) and Somerset’s Nickolas Hyde (shot put and discus) as the only individuals to win two events. He won the 100 in 11.44 seconds, edging out Connor Adams, and prevailed in the 400 in 51.32. Somewhat unusually, he does not compete in the 200 dash.

“I don’t like (the 200),” Howe said. “I could probably place in it, but I might get tight and pull (a muscle). It’s not worth it. I think my best is the 400, and I focus on that run. I need to run something else, and the 100 fits into my schedule real well.”

May qualified for the state cross country meet in the fall and now has set a goal to finish in the top eight in the PIAA Class 2A track championships this year. May finished second in the 1600 run to Yourish on Saturday and came back to dominate the 3200 in 10:08.63.

A growth spurt of approximately 5 inches has boosted May’s confidence.

“I made big gains from my first meet indoor meet,” May said. “I ran 4:57 in the mile and 10:40 in the 32, and I’ve cut that down by 20 seconds and 40 seconds, so I’m slowly progressing.”

BOYS

KEY: AA–Altoona Area; AJV–Altoona Area junior varsity; BEA–Bald Eagle Area; BD–Bedford Area; BA–Bellwood-Antis; BG–Bishop Guilfoyle; BR–Bradford Area; CN–Central; CL–Clearfield Area; DL–Deer Lakes; EC–Elk County Catholic; FV–Fairview; FL–Fort Leboeuf; HB–Hollidaysburg Area; HD–Huntingdon Area; K–Kane Area; KA–Kiski Area; PC–Penn Cambria; PL–Purchase Line; SA–Somerset Area; TY–Tyrone Area

100 dash: 1, Howe, HB, 11.44; 2, C. Adams, AA, 11.54; 3, Wolfe, BA, 11.67; 4, Myrick, BG, 11.70; 5, Foor, BD, 11.71; 6, Koss, EC, 11.75; 7, Mason, KA, 11.86; 8, Pattison, BR, 11.94.

200 dash: 1, Lawhead, AA, 23.56; 2, Koss, EC, 23.73; 3, Bosworth, BR, 23.82; 4, Knode, HD, 24.09; 5, Wolfe, BA, 24.14; 6, Zembower, BD, 24.21; 7, Mason, KA, 24.31; 8, Ossa, FL, 24.52.

400 dash: 1, Howe, HB, 51.32; 2, Bosworth, BR, 52.56; 3, Grabil, HB, 53.77; 4, Zembower, BD, 53.90; 5, Firanski, CL, 54.12; 6, Good, FV, 55.01; 7, John, HB, 55.42; 8, Biesinger, CN, 56.24.

800 run: 1, Yourish, DL, 2:05.45; 2, Pisani, KA, 2:06.86; 3, Summers, AJV, 2:10.05; 4, Kraft, BR, 2:10.28; 5, Wilkinson, HB, 2:11.28; 6, Paul, HB, 2:11.66; 7, Good, FV, 2:12.83; 8, Wedel, HB, 2:12.95.

1600 run: 1, Yourish, DL, 4:32.93; 2, May, BD, 4:38.61; 3, Hoffman, EC, 4:42.32; 4, Carnovale, EC, 4:46.85; 5, Jones, HB, 4:48.86; 6, Love, HB, 4:53.46; 7, Vezza, CL, 4:53.55; 8, Hatch, AA, 4:54.15.

3200 run: 1, May, BD, 10:08.63; 2, Henninger, AA, 10:37.77; 3, Vezza, CL, 10:40.55; 4, Love, HB, 10:43.72; 5, Jones, HB, 10:47.80; 6, Wolfe, KA, 11:01.63; 7, Clyma, AA, 11:06.53; 8, Ebersole, AJV, 11:06.76.

110 hurdles: 1, Barnes, AA, 15.65; 2, Blose, FL, 16.31; 3, Patterson, BR, 16.40; 4, Kravetz, AA, 16.97; 5, Wilson, BA, 17.46; 6, Skinner, FL, 17.49; 7, Sawtell, FV, 17.68.

300 hurdles: 1, Wittman, EC, 42.03; 2, Blose, FL, 42.10; 3, Barnes, AA, 43.54; 4, Liners, BR, 43.86; 5, Wilson, BA, 44.03; 6, Skinner, FL, 44.52; 7, Kravetz, AA, 44.69; 8, Walk, TY, 44.70.

400 relay: 1, Altoona, 42.96; 2, Kiski Area, 44.89; 3, Bedford, 45.40; 4, Bellwood-Antis, 45.49; 5, Altoona JV, 45.59; 6, Fort Leboeuf, 45.72; 7, Hollidaysburg, 46.00; 8, Bradford, 46.12.

1600 relay: 1, Altoona, 3:37.31; 2, Bradford, 3:39.67; 3, Hollidaysburg, 3:40.80; 4, Kane, 3:40.84; 5, Bedford, 3;48.90; 6, Somerset, 3;50.63; 7, Bellwood-Antis, 3:51.74; 8, Altoona JV, 3:53.00.

3200 relay: 1, Altoona, 8:30.85; 2, Elk County Catholic, 8:36.31; 3, Hollidaysburg, 8:42.58; 4, Kiski Area, 8:45.09; 5, Purchase Line, 9:07.59; 6, Kane, 9:08.92; 7, Altoona JV, 9:14.52; 8, Bradford, 9:21.04.

High jump: 1, Wasiulewski, FL, 6-2; 2, (tie), Hayford, HB, and Patterson, BR, 6-0; 4, Wortman, EC, 6-0; 5, Lynch, CL, 6-0; 6, Barnhart, SA, 5-10; 7, Metzger, HB, 5-8; 8, Weston, AA, 5-8.

Long jump: 1, C. Adams, AA, 21-6.25; 2, J. Adams, AA, 20-4.5; 3, Collecchi, KA, 20-4; 4, Friedenberger, TY, 20-1.25; 5, Buck, SA, 19-9.75; 6, Vasbinder, TY, 19-7.5; 7, Kellam, BD, 19-5.75; 8, Foor, BD, 19-4.5.

Triple jump: 1, Lynch, CL, 43-11; 2, Wasiulewski, FL, 43-3.5; 3, Buck, SA, 41-10; 4, Vasbinder, TY, 41-7; 5, J. Adams, AJV, 41-2.5; 6, Davis, FL, 40-10.5; 7, Bell, KA, 40-3.5; 8, Irvin, BEA, 39-9.5.

Shot put: 1, N. Hyde, SA, 58-5; 2, Schultz, FV, 53-5.5; 3, D. Hyde, SA, 52-7.5; 4, Scalese, PL, 50-1.5; 5, Goncher, PL, 47-4.5; 6, Wertz, BA, 47-0.5; 7, Inguagiato, CL, 46-2.5; 8, Zattoni, CL, 45-4.

Discus: 1, N. Hyde, SA, 165-1; 2, Schulz, FV, 145-3; 3, D. Hyde, SA, 141-7; 4, Blint, KA, 134-10; 5, Inguagiato, CL, 123-4; 6, Scalese, PL, 122-9; 7, Hepler, KA, 119-5; 8, Miller, CL, 116-10.

Javelin: 1, Folcarelli, AA, 183-3; 2, Cook, BD, 164-11; 3, Fyock, PL, 163-3; 4, Liebel, BG, 151-10; 5, Huey, PL, 143-9; 6, Hottel, KA, 143-3; 7, Zimmerman, TY, 140-7; 8, Bobby, EC, 140-7.

Pole vault: 1, Race, KA, 13-0; 2, Kellam, BR, 12-6; 3, Lichtinger, FL, 12-6; 4, Flarend, AJV, 12-0; 5, DeAngelis, AA, 11-6; 6, Koelle, AA, 11-6; 7, Blose, FL, 11-6; 8, Turner, BEA, 11-0.

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