Shippensburg claims 2 PIAA track & field gold medals

SHIPPENSBURG — The hometown Shippensburg Greyhounds had quite a nice day Saturday as the track & field season came to a close with the PIAA Championships at Shippensburg University.

The Hounds ended up with four medals Saturday, including two of the gold variety.

Brady Diller

Dakota Arana defended his state title in the boys Class 3A high jump, while junior Jillian Sydnor was the victor in the 400 dash.

Arana, a senior, ripped off a winning jump of 6-10. There were four jumpers still alive after the bar was set at 6-4 and only two, Arana and Brock Harris of St. Joseph’s Prep, after the bar was moved to 6-5. Arana hit on his first attempt at 6-6 and Harris missed three times, giving Arana the title.

Arana cleared on his first attempt at 6-8 and his second at 6-10. He tried to hit 7-1 (one inch above his best), but missed three times.

Sydnor was timed in 55.17 to capture gold in the 400. The runner-up, Jianna Long of Ephrata, hit the line in 55.82. Sydnor broke her own school record in the event, which was 55.67.

Also for Ship, senior Anthony Smith took second in the discus — his throw of 165-1 trailed only Cumberland Valley’s Wade Shomper (172-8). Sydnor picked up the other medal by placing 7th in the 200 with a time of 24.89.

Claire Paci

Greencastle-Antrim also had a pair of excellent showings. Sophomore Claire Paci earned her second silver medal of the meet — she was runner-up to Moon’s Mia Cochran in the 3200 race, with Cochran timed in 10:13.62 and Paci second in 10:35.96.

Paci also finished second to Cochran in Friday’s 1600 race. Cochran also won the 800 Saturday and her three victories were worth 30 points to lift Moon to the team title.

For the Blue Devil boys, Brady Diller continued his rapid progression in the javelin. Two weeks ago, his best throw was 159-7, and he went to 172-5 in last Saturday’s District 3 meet. This week, the senior unleashed a throw of 180-5 to place third.

Two other area athletes picked up medals Saturday. Chambersburg sophomore Jermere Jones ran a time of 15.07 to earn a seventh-place medal in the 110 hurdles and G-A senior Weber Long closed out a brilliant career by taking eighth in the 3200 in a time of 9:16.01.

Jermere Jones

Other local competitors included Shippensburg junior Spencer Edey (11th in long jump, 21-2.25), Chambersburg junior Camryn Kiser (16th in 3200, 11:00.34), Greencastle senior Nate Kirkwood (16th in long jump, 20-11), and Ship senior Connor Landreth (tied for 17th in high jump, 6-0).

In the boys 3A team standings, Shippensburg was tied for eighth with Pennridge with 20 points, Chambersburg was tied with Altoona for 16th place with 12 points and Greencastle was 34th with 7 points.

In the girls 3A, G-A placed 13th with 16 points and Ship was 22nd with 12 points.