At home meet, Smorey javelin thrower retains Baldwin Invitational title




It proved to be a highly successful title defense — in spite of the cold, dreary weather conditons.


Baldwin senior Luke Smorey won his second consecutive boys’ javelin championship at the 2014 Baldwin Invitational held last week at Baldwin Stadium.


“Luke is getting to the point that he’s starting to put into focus everything he’s been coached all year,” Ed Helbig, Baldwin’s head coach, said. “We just need some warmer weather for him to pop one out there.”


The invitational was sponsored again by Brooks Sports and Elite Runners & Walkers.


Smorey delivered with a winning toss of 191 feet, 8 inches to easily defeat North Allegheny’s Andrew Manz, who placed second with a throw of 179-1.


“I simply wanted to get a good throw in and I feel like I was able to do that,” said Smorey, who is coached by Baldwin assistant Tom Damiani.


“The weather made it tough but also encouraging because I know there are better throws to come.”


Smorey, a California (Pa.) University football recruit, is the defending champion WPIAL Class AAA boys’ javelin event.


He snatched first place at last year’s Baldwin Invite with a toss of 196-4.


Mich a triple medalist for Lady Jaguars


Thomas Jefferson’s freshman sensation, Abbey Mich, was a triple medalist in the Baldwin Invitational girls’ competition.


Mich was a double medalist in the hurdles, finishing fifth in the 100-meter event in 16.17, and sixth in the 300-meter event in 47.31.


She also ran the anchor leg for the TJ girls’ 1,600-meter relay unit that placed seventh in 4:15.47.


“Abbey ran very well. I was happy with all of her performances,” said Mike Rose, head coach of the TJ girls’ team. “We spoke before the meet that there were some very good athletes there and that the only race she could control was hers, which I believe she did, leading to multiple great performances.”


Mich was joined by senior Missy Wagner and sophomores Veronica Napolitano and Michaela McKay in the girls’ 1,600 relay event.


“The weather, as a whole, has been tough, both for training and competing (this year),” Rose said. “I was very happy with the girls’ 1,600 relay at the end of the night. With those weather conditions and the length of the meet, it showed a lot of focus and mental toughness to come back after their other events, and being at a meet for 12 hours, to run a respectable time and place.


“They were not in the fast heat, so they knew they had to run all out for time then wait to see if it was enough, which it was.”


Hinish takes second in girls’ long jump


Kadin Hinish, a sophomore standout in the Baldwin track and field program, earned the runner-up spot in the girls’ long jump event at this year’s invitational with a mark of 17-10.


“I was kind of surprised by Kadin,” Helbig said. “There’s a lot of real good long jumpers out there, but Kadin likes to compete and rise to the occasion.


“It was just a matter of time for her to get comfortable with the runways.”

Hinish captured the Tri-State Track Coaches Association girls’ indoor long-jump championship this past winter with a mark of 17-7.


Hinish and Smorey both met the national silver standard in their specialties at this year’s invitational.


Jackson places fifth in boys’ long jump


The only other local invitational medalist was Baldwin senior Gary Jackson, who corralled fifth place in the boys’ long jump event with a 21-8.5 mark.


“Gary had a tough night; one event carried over to the next event. Hopefully, he’s gotten that out of his system,” Helbig said.


“But to finish fifth (in the long jump) on a tough night really says something about the work he puts in.”


Hinish and Jackson both are coached by Baldwin assistant Tony Anderson.


Zajac, Semkiew records both broken


Two long-standing records held by former Baldwin athletes were shattered at this year’s invite.


Shaler junior Brianna Schwartz broke Carol Zajac’s WPIAL, stadium and invitational record in the girls’ 3,200-meter run with a time of 10:10.03.


“I knew the record was 10:25, so I think anything under that I would have been happy with,” Schwartz said.


Hempfield senior Max Adams broke Ron Semkiew’s stadium record in the boys’ discus event with a toss of 192 feet.


“I accomplished everything I wanted to do,” Adams said. “I had a personal record in the discus and had my best throw in the shot this season. I’ll take that any day.”


Zajac set her record of 10:25.7 in 1990. Semkiew set his record of 189 feet in 1972.



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