Western Wayne's girls varsity track & field team rolled to a lopsided win over Scranton High School on Tuesday. That victory sealed the deal on a perfect season and a Division Two title for the Lady 'Cats.
According to Justin Collins, Western Wayne’s girls track team arrived at the top of the standings a year sooner than he expected.
On Tuesday afternoon at Memorial Stadium, the Lady ‘Cat coach piloted his squad to a 91-59 Lackawanna League victory over Scranton High School. The win was the sixth of the season for Western Wayne and brought with it an undisputed Division Two title.
“I think this win was a little bit anticlimactic after last week’s battle with Valley View, but we’re very happy to be Division Two champions,” Coach Collins told TWI Sports. “The girls knew Valley View was probably going to be our biggest hurdle. So, beating Scranton really wasn’t as emotional as that.”
Western Wayne’s latest victory was a total team effort. The Lady ‘Cats once again dominated on the track, but also received crucial points in field events. While Lyndsay Barna and Rebecca Farrell were busy winning multiple races, girls like Claire Bateman and Kristine Nilsen also chipped in with big victories.
It’s a formula that has paid dividends all season long.
“Winning the division couldn’t have happened without everyone working hard and doing what they’re capable of doing,” said Coach Collins. “This is a very competitive group of girls. They’re fun to coach because they’re just as competitive at practice as they are during meets. Every one of them hates to lose...to anybody.”
The Lady ‘Cats won’t waste a lot of time basking in their latest accomplishment. No, they’re already focused on the road ahead. Western Wayne is slated to compete at the Jordan Relays tonight as a tune-up for next Tuesday’s Robert Spagna League Championship meet.
Both events will be held at Scranton Memorial Stadium.
Off & Running
Western Wayne’s road to the Division Two title was fraught with challenges right from the start. The Lady ‘Cats opened the season with a razor-thin win over Dunmore, then added back-to-back victories over pre-season favorites Montrose and Valley View.
“Beating Valley View was huge,” said Coach Collins. “Our girls are mentally very tough. They understand what it takes to win a tight meet like that. As coaches, we prepare them so they know what to expect. But, they have to take that information and do something with it. They’re very good at that.”
Lyndsay Barna and Rebecca Farrell paced the Lady ‘Cat attack on the track. These two girls combined to win four races and give Western Wayne an early edge on Tuesday afternoon.
Barna continued her dominance in hurdling events. Lyndsay blazed her way to a win in both the 100M high (:15.1) and the 300M intermediate (:49.6). Farrell was equally impressive in the sprints. Rebecca broke the tape in the 100M dash (:13) and the 200M (:27.8).
Amber Curtis and Sarah Lutat each contributed a big win against Scranton as the Lady ‘Cats swept both distance events. Curtis came through with a gold medal performance in the 1600M, stopping the clock at 6:31. Lutat added another win to her already impressive freshman resume. Sarah held off a two-pronged Knight assault to capture the 3200M (13:55).
Courtney Kromko continued her brilliant rookie campaign with two more individual victories. The Lady ‘Cat frosh took first place in the 400M (1:03.7) and then added a win in the long jump (16’ 2”).
As has been the case for the majority of the season, Western Wayne looked well-nigh invincible in the relays. The Lady ‘Cats won all three events Tuesday, a fact that sounded the proverbial death knell for Scranton.
Sarah Lutat, Kristine Nilsen, Amber Curtis and Shannon Nolan combined to open the meet with a victory in the 4x800M relay. This Lady ‘Cat quartet covered the two miles in a time of 13:40.
Charlcie Brink, Rebecca Farrell, Courtney Kromko and Shannon Nolan teamed up to take first place in the 4x400M relay. This foursome sprinted its way to a winning time of 4:32.9.
In the 4x100M relay, Rebecca Farrell, Lyndsay Barna, Sarah Wildenstein and Charlcie Brink broke the tape in a lightning-quick time of :53.6.
Meanwhile in the field, Nilsen and Claire Bateman were going about the task of closing out the meet. Nilsen soared to victory in the high jump (4’8”), while Bateman won the pole vault with an effort of 7’.
Western Wayne’s future looks just as bright as its present. The Lady ‘Cats’ biggest loss will be Kaitlyn Herzog, a versatile senior who provides solid leadership.
“I’m already looking forward to next year,” said Coach Collins. “We still have alot to accomplish this year, but we’re getting almost the whole team back. We’re definitely going to miss Katie Herzog, but I’m hoping that someone will step up and fill that void.”