Senior Spotlight: Hempfield javelin champ keeps goals in sight

Saturday, May 23, 2020 | 8:00 AM

If things were normal around the world, and we know they’re not, Hempfield Area senior Jake Boord would be in Shippensburg competing in the PIAA Track and Field Championships.

But the coronavirus took that opportunity away from Boord and hundreds of athletes from across the state.

Still, Boord remains positive and is looking forward to continuing his track and field career at Allegheny College.

The 2019 WPIAL Class AAA javelin champion is holding out hope that he’ll be able to compete at high school nationals with his brother Noah as well.

What were your thoughts when the coronavirus stopped your senior year?

Initially, I felt there was a little bit of hope we’d return. I didn’t think my senior year would end that way. But two weeks in, I realized we weren’t going to have a season. That’s what made my junior season so special: winning the individual WPIAL title and the team title, competing at the state and national meets. I’m leaving Hempfield at the highest spot possible.

What were your goals this season?

First, be a leader for my teammates. Hempfield has such a rich tradition. Seniors usually step up and take charge. We had a lot of young talent and I felt we’d have another good season. Second, defend the team title. I felt we could come together as a team and carry on the tradition. And thirdly, I wanted to win another WPIAL title. I was coming off an injury during indoor season, so I gained 26 pounds and got stronger. Hayden Fox was a leader for me and he taught me to give 110%. I feel if I gave 110%, the year would be a success. We faced a lot of challenges, but I was ready to tackle them.

There is a chance that you can compete at nationals. What does that mean?

I would get a chance to compete in the same meet as my brother Noah (an eighth grader). He’s a triple jumper and it would be special to compete with him.If I had one meet to compete in, it would be the nationals because of him. Compete with him and graduate, in-person, the next day in July.

What have you been doing to keep yourself busy?

Finishing my schoolwork online and working. I’m working for a company that refinishes gym floors. It’s a cool job. I’ve also done some work around the house and my brother and I have done a lot of fishing at a private camp. It’s probably the most fishing that we’ve done.

Anything else that you’ve done?

I’ve done a lot of work with my church (Trinity United Church of Christ in Greensburg). I’ve helped the pastor deliver her message with by recording it and putting it on YouTube. I’ve also helped mail out bulletins.

What are the other events do you participate in?

I was going to try many. I was thinking about trying the multi-sport event — the long jump, triple jump, hurdles and sprints. Coach (Melissa) White even had me trying the pole vault. That’s a tough event, but I was going to try it.

What was the main reason you selected Allegheny?

It came down to Allegheny, Dennison and Seton Hill. All are great schools, but in the end, it came down to academics. I know there will be a day when I hang up my spikes. So I felt Allegheny’s academics would help me prepare better for life. Allegheny was also the first school to reach out to me my junior year.

Paul Schofield is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Paul by email at or via Twitter .


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