Senior Amanda Long and junior Avery Scripture will be representing the Tribe at Penn State in the upcoming championships.
The Upper Perkiomen Winter Track Club will conclude a successful season by sending two members to the state championship event on February 25.
Senior Amanda Long and junior Avery Scripture will be representing the Tribe at Penn State. Long qualified in the 800 meter and Scripture will be running the mile and 800. It will be the first trip to States for both runners.
Last week, both took firsts in the Albright College High School Invitational. Long captured the 800 in 2:25.12, over two seconds ahead of Joslin Sellers of Lampeter. Scripture ran the mile in 4:42.13, more than ten seconds faster than his closest competitor.
Other Upper Perk runners also had a good day at Albright. Senior Erich Keyser finished second in the 55 meter hurdles in a time of 8.32 but tweaked a hamstring to effectively finish his winter season. Otherwise, he might have gone on to States also.
Emily Rodenberger was third in the 55 meter dash (7.91) and Rachel Landis finished fifth in the mile (6:08.82).
The girls 4x400 meter relay, Rodenberger, Long, Landis and Jamie Cuita, took first in 4:33.8
Just about all of Upper Perk’s runners improved their times during the season. Long knocked three seconds off her 800 time from last year.
“I’m a lot stronger, and I have a better base under me (through) improving my technique,” she said.
Scripture made even more dramatic improvement, dropping a whopping 30 seconds off his indoor mile time and trimming 12 seconds from his 800 clocking. He sees his improvement stemming from “training harder in cross-country (which) allowed me to train harder throughout this season.”
Keyser had high praise for his teammate. “He’s going to become a tremendous runner.”
Over the next week or so, Long and Scripture will be readying themselves for the championship meet physically and mentally.
“We made a plan for the next two weeks to make sure my legs are fresh,” Long related. “I’ll definitely be in good 800 shape.”
“Penn State is one of the nicest tracks in the state,” Scripture noted. “There will be the best kids in the state there, and I’m hoping I can just run my fastest time ever there.”
Despite the fact that the winter track group no longer receives direct financial support from the school district, the program retained its numbers. Parents stepped up to raise funds and coach Dean Wright, who is also the spring track coach, arranged a full competitive schedule for the team.
“There really hasn’t been a difference. It is a club, not a school program anymore, but they pretty much treat it as a school program,” noted Scripture. “It’s been one of our best seasons.”
The runners expect to see a positive carryover to spring track because of all the hard work put in this winter.
“(Winter track) is going to benefit me personally because I’ve been training harder, but also because the team as a whole has a lot of runners out. They’ve been training hard, and since they’ve been training harder earlier, they’re going to be running better times,” Scripture predicted.
Keyser agreed. “Without a doubt, it definitely helps everyone get in much better shape. You can definitely see the physical endurance and stamina that people are building throughout the entire winter season.”