Westmoreland County track and field notebook: Sellitto, Sullenberger mourned at WCCA event

Sunday, May 2, 2021 | 7:34 PM

Before the running finals at Saturday’s Westmoreland County Coaches’ Association track and field championships, a moment of silence was held in honor of association president Larry Sellitto and Hempfield coach and historian Roger Sullenberger, who passed away this past year.

Sellitto was a strong president and a fighter for all the county athletes. He also was an assistant football coach at Franklin Regional.

Sullenberger was a longtime coach at Hempfield and had every track and field athlete’s runs, throws and jumps in school history.

Gene Brisbane, acting president, said he was impressed with the moment before the finals. It was the WCCA’s first event since the coronavirus canceled things in March 2020.

Impressive toss

Ligonier Valley junior Miles Higgins won the javelin with a throw of 180 feet, 4 inches. He edged Norwin’s Aaron Schmook (168-10).

Tunkhannock junior Matthew Prebola has the best throw in the state at 205-6.

“I’m excited that we have Miles back for another season,” Rams coach Tim Dumas said. “We’re excited about what he can achieve.”

Looking to Baldwin

The annual Baldwin Invitational will be Friday (boys) and Saturday (girls).

One big anticipated matchup on the boys’ side will be in the shot put, where the top two throwers in the state will go head-to-head.

Wilmington senior Connor Vass-Gal is No. 1 with a throw of 63-2 1/2, and Hempfield senior Daniel Norris is No. 2 with a throw of 62-4. Norris has the best throw in the state in the discus of 190-2.

A pair of Greensburg Central Catholic athletes also are looking forward to the competition.

“I’m excited to see how I rank up against the runners from bigger schools,” junior Joe Blahovec said. “I was happy how I competed at the (Westmorelan) county meet. I just want to continue to improve.”

Blahovec won the 200- and 400-meter dashes and finished sixth in the 100.

GCC junior Corinn Brewer was a triple winner at the county meet, taking the title in the 800 and 1,600 and the pole vault. She placed sixth in the high jump.

“Every time I compete I want to win everything,” Brewer said. “I just want to continue to improve, and I know my times will get better against better competition.”

WPIAL team playoffs

The WPIAL Team playoffs begin 3 p.m. Tuesday at eight locations.

The winners from the four semifinals sites will advance to the team championships May 12, with Class AAA boys and girls at West Mifflin and Class AA boys and girls finals at Peters Township.

The matchups:

Boys Class AAA

At Baldwin: Baldwin, Beaver, Belle Vernon, Seneca Valley.

At Butler: Butler, Central Catholic, Kiski Area, New Castle.

At Norwin: Canon-McMillan, Connellsville, Franklin Regional, Norwin.

At South Fayette: Hampton, Hempfield, Mt. Lebanon, South Fayette.

Boys Class AA semifinals

At Greensburg Central Catholic: – East Allegheny, Greensburg Central Catholic, Ligonier Valley, Waynesburg.

At Riverside: Aliquippa, Chartiers-Houston, Deer Lakes, Riverside, South Side Beaver.

At Shenango: Burrell, New Brighton, North Catholic, Riverview, Shenango.

At South Park: California, Hopewell, Mt. Pleasant, South Park.

Girls Class AAA semifinals

At Baldwin: Armstrong, Baldwin, Beaver, Belle Vernon.

At Butler: Butler, Central Valley, Kiski Area, West Allegheny.

At Norwin: Franklin Regional, Laurel Highlands, Norwin, Oakland Catholic.

At South Fayette: Hempfield, Mt. Lebanon, North Allegheny, South Fayette.

Girls Class AA semifinals

At Greensburg Central Catholic: Derry Area, Greensburg Central Catholic, Quaker Valley, Ligonier Valley, Waynesburg.

At Riverside: Mohawk, Our Lady of the Sacred Heart, Shady Side Academy, South Side Beaver.

At Shenango: Burrell, New Brighton, North Catholic, Riverview, Shenango.

At South Park: Brownsville, Carlynton, Hopewell, Mt. Pleasant, South Park.

Paul Schofield is a TribLive reporter covering high school and college sports and local golf. He joined the Trib in 1995 after spending 15 years at the Daily Courier in Connellsville, where he served as sports editor for 14 years. He can be reached at pschofield@triblive.com.

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