Fredericks, Moyer medal at states
Palmerton’s Chris Fredericks gets ready to throw the javelin Friday at the state track and field meet. Fredericks placed third in the event. BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS
Northern Lehigh’s Zach Moyer attempts to clear the bar during the high jump at the state track meet on Friday. Moyer tied for eighth to earn a medal. BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS
Jim Thorpe’s Sam Hydro rounds the turn during his 800 preliminary race on Friday. BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS
Marian’s Emma McClafferty gets ready to throw the discus during the state track and field championships Friday. McClafferty finished in 11th place. BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS
Tamaqua’s Matt Amodea competes in the shot put event at the state meet on Friday. Amodea placed 23rd. BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS
Marian’s Ean Chelak turns the corner during the 400 preliminaries at states. BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS
Madeline Consuelos of Northwestern runs with the baton during the 3200 relay. BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS
Lehighton’s Kaia Slaw soars through the air during the triple jump at states. BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS
Aaron Stasko of Palmerton sprints to the finish line during the 100 prelims. BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS
SHIPPENSBURG – Chris Fredericks sought no consolation prize.
The Palmerton senior came to Shippensburg in hopes of winning a state title.
What Fredericks got might not have been exactly what he wanted, but it was another achievement in what has been a remarkable career.
Fredericks’ mark of 185-4 helped him place third in the Class 2A javelin and stand on the podium for the first time at Seth Grove Stadium Friday at the PIAA Championships.
“Since it’s my third year here, and it’s my first state medal, I guess I’m OK with it,” said Fredericks.
“It’s not what I wanted. I wanted first, I’m not going to lie at all. I thought I could get first, I wanted to get first. I had the top throw going in throughout the whole year, and I just didn’t live up to my expectations.”
The Palmerton senior has been nothing short of spectacular this season. Fredericks threw 206-3 in the final meet of the regular season, and followed that with the Colonial League meet record with a mark of 205-1 before winning his third district title last week.
But Fredericks couldn’t quite pinpoint what kept him off the top step of the podium.
“I didn’t really think anything was different about today,” he said. “I woke up feeling good. Eating breakfast with my coaches, I felt really good. Got to the runway, threw my spikes on, got on it, took a couple warmup throws, and I felt pretty good. There were a few things I could have fixed, but I didn’t want to mess with it too much. It’s just tough.”
Fredericks missed the medal stand by one spot a year ago, finishing ninth with a mark of 181-7.
“It’s driven me a lot. I had little goals set up throughout the season,” said Fredericks.
“One of my first ones was obviously I wanted to break my school record again. But every meet that I went to, I wanted to set the facility record there. That’s what my goal was throughout the whole year. States is a little bit of an exception, because the state record is 246-9.
“But I thought I was able to do it throughout the whole year. There were two in the middle of the year, I think, that I didn’t get, and I missed out on the most important goal this year, the gold.”
Fredericks’ drive for perfection has helped him stand out among his peers. It’s also made some days tougher than others.
“I expect the best out of myself,” said Fredericks. “I push myself in the weight room, I train, my coaches push me at the (javelin) factory on Sundays, and there’s no reason I shouldn’t have won today, that’s why I’m so hard on myself. “
While his high school career is finished, Fredericks is eager to take the next step in his career. He will be attending West Point prep school next year, and he has his sights set on bigger and better things in the future.
“My goal is throw as far as I can at the prep school, train as hard as I can, and get ready for my first year there. I want to be able to make NCAAs my first year there,” Fredericks said.
“I just want to become a better person overall. That place makes the best out of people, and you meet great people and great friends. The camaraderie is awesome up there. On my visit, I loved it. I can’t wait to be a part of that family.”
Fredericks knows his time at Palmerton has prepared him for the next step in his journey.
“I think it’s gotten me ready. This gave me a little taste of what it’s going to feel like for the next five years, training-wise,” Fredericks said. “I know it’s going to be a lot more different there, a lot more intense. But I think I’m ready to go out, and get bigger, stronger faster, and meet with those people. I’m going to do big things, hopefully.”
Fredericks wasn’t the only area medalist on the first day of competition. Northern Lehigh’s Zach Moyer cleared 6-2 to tie with two other jumpers and place eighth in the Class 2A high jump.
“It means a lot,” said Moyer. “All the training I put in during the offseason is starting to pay off. Putting in all that hard work means I can get something positive out of it, which is great.”
Moyer shook off some nerves and a slow start to claim his first state medal.
“Yesterday at practice I was doing pretty well jumping,” he said. “And then I came here and warmed up, and I felt good. But as soon as the meet started I just got a feeling in my head that I had to try harder, and It didn’t really go so well on my first jump because I didn’t make it. After that, I cleared my head, focused and found a way to make it happen.
“I was hoping to do a little better than what I did today; I was hoping to for 6-6, 6-4 around there. I was close at 6-4, I just didn’t get it to go. So hopefully next year I can come back stronger than ever.”
Palmerton’s Jordan Nelson ran a 15.18 to win his Class 2A 110 hurdle heat and advance to today’s semis.
“I kind of just tried taking it easy,” said Nelson. “I just did what I had to do to win the race.
“I wasn’t really working on speed; I was just working on form there.”
The second overall seed in the event, Nelson hasn’t changed his approach despite his lofty standing.
“I’m just excited to come to semifinals tomorrow and compete,” Nelson said.
Jim Thorpe’s Jarrin Geisinger continued the momentum of last week’s district meet with a solid 11.04 to win his Class 2A 100 heat and advance to the semis. Palmerton’s Aaron Stasko (11.32) and Marian’s Gabe Bauer (false start) did not advance.
Despite winning the 100 and 200 a week ago, and carrying a No. 5 seed into the event, Geisinger knows there’s still plenty of room for improvement.
“That’s all right. I could do better,” Geisinger said afterward. “I was terrible getting out of the box. I definitely missed about 20 meters on my start because of the blocks. It was bad.
“They are running fast in 2A, so I definitely have to get my start perfect for tomorrow.”
Geisinger is eager to get back on track and make the corrections to land on the podium for the second time in his career.
“It feels great to be here, and for it to be my last year,” said the senior. “I definitely want to get top three, that’s my biggest goal. Right now, I just want to get through the semis and make it into the finals.”
Geisinger ran a 22.91, placing fifth in his 200 prelim to advance to the semifinals.
Tamaqua’s Grace Stegemerten, Sarah Maue, Brianna Dumond, Frances Kabana finished fourth in their Class 2A 3200 relay heat with a time of 9:54.83, and qualified for today’s final. They were seeded sixth with a time of 9:49.46.
“That was our main goal, just to get to finals, and get one more chance to run this team tomorrow, and really bring it home,” said Dumond.
The Raiders were near the front of the pack for much of the race. Brianna Dumond was second after the third leg, and anchor Frances Kabana took the lead coming out of the second turn on her first lap.
“Every race is nerve-racking, it’s just we’ve gotten a lot better at handling our nerves and coping with it, especially here,” said Dumond. “Looking at that stand full of people … we’ve done it before; if you don’t look, it’s not there.”
Kabana settled into second after the first lap, and pushed hard in the closing stages going for third.
“Last year, we placed 10th in finals, so our goal is obviously just to better that, and just try and see if we can get ninth, eighth; just move up,” said Dumond.
“We want to try to break our record even more,” added Maue. “I think we can go under 9:45. That’s what our PR is – and our record – so we’d like to do better than that.”
North Schuylkill, the runner-up to Tamaqua at last week’s district meet, was fifth with a time of 9:58.39 to also qualify for finals.
“We try not to pay attention to where teams are seeded, and if we should be behind or ahead of them,” said Kabana. “If I feel good, I go.”
“We just try to focus on one person, and run with them until you pass them,” said Dumond.
Palmerton’s Jake Martinez ran a 4:24.05 to place third in his 2A 1600 preliminary heat and advance to the finals.
Jim Thorpe’s Lydia Wallace turned in a solid performance in the 2A 300 hurdles, running a PR of 45.97 to place second in her preliminary heat and advance to the finals.
Sam Hydro advanced to the 2A 800 final for the Olympians with a time of 1:59.34 and a fourth-place finish in his preliminary heat.
NOT THIS YEAR … Marian’s Emma McClafferty placed 11th in the 2A discus with a throw of 115-3. McClafferty was sixth a year ago.
WHAT’S NEXT … On track action resumes Saturday with the 3200 at 9 a.m. The Class 2A girls will run first. Field events are also scheduled to begin at the same time.
PIAA TRACK & FIELD CHAMPIONSHIPS
Results of Times News area athletes
Javelin - Chris Fredericks, Palmerton, 185-4, third overall
110 hurdles - Jordan Nelson, Palmerton, 15.18, first in preliminary heat, advances to semifinals
100 - Jarrin Geisinger, Jim Thorpe, 11.04, first in preliminary heat, advances to semifinals; Aaron Stasko, Palmerton, 11.32, sixth in preliminary heat, does not advance; Gabe Bauer, Marian, false start, does not advance
1600 - Jake Martinez, Palmerton, 4:24.05, third in preliminary heat, advances to finals
400 relay - Palmerton, third in preliminary heat, 44.82, does not advance
400 - Ean Chelak, Marian, 52.21, sixth in preliminary heat, does not advance
Discus - William Munson, Jim Thorpe, 135-1, 16th overall
High jump - Zach Moyer, Northern Lehigh, 6-2, eighth overall
800 - Sam Hydro, Jim Thorpe, 1:59.34, fourth in preliminary heat, advances to final
200 - Jarrin Geisinger, Jim Thorpe, 22.91, fifth in preliminary heat, advances to semifinals
Shot put - Matthew Amodea, Tamaqua, 46-9 3/4, 23rd overall
800 - Derian Stianche, Tamaqua, 2:02.89, 10th in preliminary heat, does not advance
Pole vault - Khalid Holland, Tamaqua, no height
3200 relay - Tamaqua, fourth in preliminary heat, 9:54.83, advances to finals
Discus - Emma McClafferty, Marian, 115-3, 11th overall
100 - Kristen Guelcher, Northern Lehigh, 12.85, fifth in preliminary heat, does not advance
800 - Lydia Wallace, Jim Thorpe, 2:26.71, eighth in preliminary heat, does not advance
300 hurdles - Lydia Wallace, Jim Thorpe, 45.97, second in preliminary heat, advances to finals
3200 relay - Northwestern, 11th in preliminary heat, 9:55.27, does not advance
Triple jump - Kaia Slaw, Lehighton, 36-8, 15th overall