Norwin girls cruise to another county track title
Friday, May 3, 2019 | 5:00 PM
The Norwin tracksters — particularly the girls team — shifted into cruise control April 27 at the annual Westmoreland County Coaches Association championships.
The Norwin girls dominated at Latrobe Memorial Stadium, more than doubling their closest competitors in team points and repeating as county champions.
The Knights racked up 130 points, as Latrobe (57), Hempfield (56), Greensburg Salem (52) and Kiski Area (49) battled for the runner-up berth.
“The girls collectively stepped up and ran very well,” coach Brian Fleckenstein said. “The girls were focused all season on these championship meets, and it showed.”
Two of the team’s catalysts were seniors Jessica Kolesar, who won the 200-meter dash (26.5 seconds) and long jump (17 feet, 6.5 inches), and placed third in the triple jump; and Emily Brozeski, who finished first in the 100 hurdles (15.56), and third in the 300 hurdles and high jump.
Kolesar and Brozeski were teammates on the Norwin girls basketball team that finished 23-3 this past season. Both girls are going to Division I schools for track and field — Kolesar to Cornell, and Brozeski to Duquesne.
The Knights’ 400-meter relay team, consisting of Kolesar, Brozeski, junior Kayla Singer and sophomore Katie Kauffman, also roared to first place in 50.09 at the WCCA meet.
The Norwin girls ended up with 24 medal-winning performances. Freshmen Bernadette Zukina (400), Layla Robertson (300 hurdles) and Riley Morningstar (javelin); sophomore Natalie Shuster (100 hurdles) and senior Lexi Gray (triple jump) all placed second.
Gray, the 2018 WPIAL Class AAA runner-up in the triple jump, also claimed seventh in the high jump, and senior Courtney Kosanovic also was a double medalist, placing in the top eight in the 1,600 and 3,200.
“All year long, our senior girls of Jessica Kolesar, Emily Brozeski, Lexi Gray, Lexi Birkland and Courtney Kosanovic have led the girls squad,” Fleckenstein said. “This senior crew is so competitive. The bigger the meet, the more those competitive juices come out. Their career records speak for themselves. They just have a drive to win and don’t accept losing.”
Other medalists for Norwin included Singer (200), junior Emily Shaw (800); senior Julia Fasiczka (800), freshman Trinity Joy (1,600); and sophomores Aleksandra Brozeski (long jump), Jordyn Turkovski (pole vault) and Hanna Zeiler (pole vault); along with Robertson, Shaw, Fasiczka and Zukina in the 1,600 relay; plus Shaw, Fasiczka, freshman Alex Walton and junior Allie Plassio in the 3,200 relay.
For the boys team, junior Dom Spatolisano was an 800 and 1,600 medalist; sophomore Tony Sacco medaled in the 110 hurdles and pole vault. Alex Jubert, another sophomore, placed second in the 3,200.
Other medalists included juniors Dom DeMaro (1,600), Harrison Barnett (3,200), Michael Ryan (long jump), Trent Cockeram (discus) and Aaron Bowen (shot put); and seniors Max Toops (high jump), Anthony Hatok (triple jump), Jeff Boyd (triple jump), William Baglio (pole vault) and Reice Morgan (shot put);
All three boys relay units were medalists. The consisted of:
• 400 — freshman Dom Barca, sophomores Ian Brown and Connor Chrisman, junior Sean Pavlic;
• 1,600 — Spatolisano, freshmen Jake Tarosky and Noah Kirsch, senior Zeke Houser;
• 3,200 — Barnett, Kirsch, sophomore John Dodaro, junior Brendan Ash.
Norwin’s boys team took fourth place in the team standings. The Knights ended up with 18 total medalists.
“We knew the boys were a bit banged up and short a few athletes at the meet,” Fleckenstein said, “so we knew it would be a long shot to win the title. However, many boys competed very well and had personal records.”
Hempfield finished first with 113 points, followed by Latrobe (80), Greensburg Salem (72), Norwin (55) and Belle Vernon (45.5).