A ‘wow’ moment

By on May 22, 2013

Todd Ruth

Ephrata Review Sports Editor

Standing on the infield of Seth Grove Stadium Saturday at Shippensburg, Mary Witmer’s 300 hurdles race was the talk of everyone.

I found it interesting listening to fellow athletes talking about her amazing race which resulted in a record time of 42.11. That’s when you know you are witnessing something special, when other competitors are as impressed as you are.

Not only was it the District Three record, but the eighth best time in the country this year (see graphic at right).

It was definitely a "wow" moment.

It just seems like Witmer has been on a serious mission ever since narrowly losing out on the State gold a year ago. And I know it must seem like forever for her, working her way back to getting another crack at State gold.

But along the way, she has done some amazing things. First she helped her team win another section team championship. Then last week, she broke the L-L record in helping her team win a league crown.

Now this.

It has been an amazing run for the Ephrata senior, who is bound for Liberty University in the fall. It would be a fitting conclusion to a wonderful high school career to see her walk away with a gold around her neck on Saturday

Can’t wait to see if she has another one in her.

District Track Champions: The titles won by Ephrata’s Mary Witmer and Emily Stauffer of Cocalico were the 38th and 39th won by local athletes at the District Three Championships.

The Cocalico boys have claimed the most titles, winning 14, while the Ephrata boys and girls have earned nine each, and the Cocalico girls seven in their history.

Here is a list of all the local winners, according to the District Three website, which keeps track of such things,

Cocalico Boys- Kyle Felpel, 2012 AAA shot put (60-7), 2011 AAA shot put (59-3 1/2); 2010 AAA shot put (55-1), and 2010 AAA discus (169-0); Jon Kegerize, 2003 AAA 300 hurdles (39.71); Joel Thiry, 2000 AAA 800 (1:56.68); 2000 AAA 4 X 800 Relay (7:57.51); Antoine Mobley, 2000 AAA triple jump (47-2); Troy Burkholder, 1995 AA discus (167-0), 1995 AA javelin (238-1 record), 1994 AA discus (153-7), and 1994 AA javelin (205-5); Troy Eberly, 1983 AA javelin (179-7); and Mike Grant, 1977 AA 330 hurdles (39-9 record).

Cocalico Girls- Emily Stauffer, 2013 AAA shot put (40-7 1/2); Marianne Gockley, 1994 AA high jump (5-2); Jenny Snyder, 1991 AA shot put (35-7); Vicki Boyer, 1990 AA 3200 (11:36.2), 1989 AA 3200 (11:55.32), 1988 AA 3200 (11:35.1); and Dianne Ferrari, 1988 AA shot (42-1 1/4).

Ephrata Boys- Mark Spang, 1996 AAA discus (175-11), 1995 AAA shot put (53-6), and 1995 AAA discus (160-2); Todd Ream, 1983 AAA high jump (6-6); 1981 AAA 4 X 800 Relay (8:09.22); Todd Peck, 1978 AAA 120 high hurdles (14.70); 1970 Mile Relay (3:27.0); and Tony Kilkuskie, 1962 880 (2:03.4).

Ephrata Girls- Mary Witmer, 2013 AAA 300 hurdles (42.11 record) and 2013 AAA 300 hurdles (43.80); Anne Mielnik, 1996 AAA shot put (41-5 1/2), 1996 AAA discus (134-0), 1995 AAA shot put (38-9), 1995 AAA discus (127-7) and 1994 AAA shot put (38-5 1/2); Sheila Mellinger, 1979 AAA 100 (11.95); and Judene Fahnestock, 1977 AAA high jump (5-6).

How the Mighty Fell: Monday was the night of the upset in the first round of the District Three AAAA and AAA Baseball playoffs.

If this were the NCAA Tournament, those brackets would be already in the waste can as both top seed in AAAA and AAA, Hempfield and Donegal, were eliminated in first round losses. In AAAA, Hempfield was 10-runned by McCaskey (who saw that coming?). Other higher seeds to fall included: second seeded Red Land, which dropped a 5-3 decision to Exeter; third seed Mechanicsburg bit the dust, dropping a 2-0 decision to Dallastown; and of course 10th seeded Ephrata, falling 5-2 to Chambersburg.

In AAA, Donegal fell 2-1 to Shippensburg, but the big story was L-L champion Lancaster Catholic, a four seed, losing to Greencastle-Antrim by a 9-6 decision.

One idea for all of the first-round upsets? Pitching.

The great equalizer in the first round is pitching. You have to figure every team at this stage of the game has at least once dominant hurler, otherwise, they’d probably be sitting at home with everybody else.

Just a thought.

More RUTH, page B-5

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