HOLLIDAYSBURG — The DuBois and Hollidaysburg track and field teams split a meet at Hollidaysburg Tuesday, with the Lady Beavers pulling out a thrilling, down to the wire 76-74 victory to extend its string of consecutive victories to 73.
The Lady Beavers last loss came in April 2008 at the hands of Altoona, by the same score of 76-74, and the host Lady Tigers were on the verge of ending the streak Tuesday afternoon. The meet outcome came down to the final event, the 4x400 relay, with Hollidaysburg holding a three-point lead entering the race where only the winner collects five points.
And, it was the Lady Beavers who prevailed in that race as veterans Jessica Smith (senior) and Reese Sayers (junior) teamed up with senior McKensy Peles and freshman Genevieve Janocha to capture the win in 4:23.11 to keep the program’s nine-year long winning streak alive and well.
“We’ve been game planning this meet, moving kids around in different events, since the bus ride home from Latrobe last Saturday night,” said Lady Beavers coach Scott Sullivan. “Our last change came just minutes before the last event of the meet, the meet-deciding 4x400 relay.
“It was very simple, with the score 74-71 Hollidaysburg, we need to win that event to win the meet. We were unsure who to put in the this stressful situation with the meet on the line. Reese and Jess took charge and convinced us who to choose, and it ended up working out very well. That is what leadership is all about.”
The 4x400 relay’s victory capped what was a strong all-around team effort as the Lady Beavers used victories in two of the three relays and some depth in other events to squeak out the overall victory. Hollidaysburg ended the day with a 10-8 advantage in wins on the day.
Smith was the lone DuBois girl with two wins in the day, as she also took home the 800 run (2:33) by five seconds over teammate Kyra Hoover.
Other Lady Beavers to notch individual wins on the day were Maddison King (100 hurdles, 16.9), Cassie Folmar (1,600, 6:03), Emalee Horner (3,200, 13:31), Ashley McCluskey (javelin, 111-5) and Jerica Fischer, who scored a key win in the high jump (5-0) on scratches over a Hollidaysburg jumper.
DuBois’ 4x800 relay squad of Madison Cable, Bayley Strouse, Trulee Stainbrook and Hoover opened the meet with a victory, crossing the line in 13:20.
Sayers added a pair of second-place finishes in the 100 and 200 dashes, while Horner (1,600), Janocha (400), Peles (300 hurdles), Folmar (3,200), Crystal Clinger (shot put) and Fischer (long jump) also were runners-up in their respective events.
“I know coaches throw around the cliche, ‘it was a team victory,’ but today truly was as every single point was needed,” said Sullivan. “My staff and I could not be prouder of the effort these young ladies put forth.”
On the boys’ side, DuBois won six of 18 events and was led by sophomore Kaleb Stevens, a double-winner who captured top honors in both the 1,600 (2:38) and 3,200 (9:07) runs.
Other individual winners for DuBois were Rick Lines (javelin, 142-0) and Randy Holben (pole vault, 12-0).
DuBois also crossed the line first in the meet-opening 3,200 relay, as the quartet of Jeremy Fischer, Andrew Boyle, Jacob Butterfuss and Seth Braid crossed the line in 8:59.
The Beavers’ 4x100 squad of Kyle Frantz, Kenny Garvey, Ethan Fields and Damien Ashenfelter also claimed top honors with a time of 45.76, edging the Golden Tigers by .12 seconds.
Garvey added second-place finishes in the 100 and 200 dashes, while Fischer was second in both the 1,600 and 3,200. DuBois also got runner-up finishes from Brenden Saunders (110 hurdles), Keaton Chapman (300 hurdles), Austin Shaffer-Doan (shot put) and Josh Wayland (pole vault).
“Overall today, even with the a loss to Hollidaysburg, I feel we had some high points,” said Beavers coach Brian Clinger. “Kaleb Stevens had a nie day for our distance runners with two first palce finishes in the 1,600 and 3,200 runs.
“It also was nice to see us win two of the three relays, and the relays realy helped us out today with 4x100 relay of Frantz, Garvey, Fields and Butterfuss and the 4x800 relay of Fischer, Boyle, Braid and Butterfuss both placing first.”
Both DuBois teams are backin action Tuesday at Punxsutawney.