YAIAA track and field preview: West York's Hoffman brothers to test their might at league meet
West York coach Julia Haynes noticed a peculiar trend after her team's last dual meet of the track and field season.
Brothers Luke and Kyle Hoffman again finished first and second in the discus throw. Haynes checked her suspicion to confirm they placed in that order during every dual meet this year.
At last week's White Rose Invitational at Central York, they nearly did it again. Luke, the sophomore, won with a throw of 135 feet, 8 inches. Kyle, the junior, was just a few feet behind and placed third.
They will test their might Friday at Dallastown as part of the YAIAA track and field championships.
The Hoffmans will begin their specialty, the discus, at 4 p.m. A new champion will be crowned in that event. Dover's Brian Lehman won it last season with a throw of 143-0, but runner-up Dustyn Lauver of Bermudian Springs is back this season and has topped out at 147-2. Luke Hoffman has reached 145-1 this season.
In hopes to improve for Friday's meet, the brothers planned to toss a college discus that weighs a pound heavier than the 3 1/2-pound high school version.
"It adds strength to your throw," Kyle Hoffman said. "It adds velocity on the discus to make it go farther, so it helps."
They usually train with the heavier discus during the offseason but curtail usage during in-season practices. This week adds a layer of anxiousness for athletes hoping to qualify for next week's District 3 championships in Shippensburg.
All of the boys' and girls' throwing champions crowned Friday will be new ones. Five individual boys' events have returning champions. William Penn senior Deshaun Horton won two golds last year, taking the triple and long jumps.
The girls have six individual events with returning champions. South Western junior Lynne Mooradian has a few titles to her credit — four gold medals in one night last year at Dallastown.
She swept the sprinting events, taking the 100- and 200-meter dashes, plus the 400 and the 400 relay. After repeated appearances at the medal stand, Mooradian said she worried about rival runner Angelica Gonzalez of Red Lion.
Gonzalez won the long jump with one leap of 17-3 and bowed out with a leg injury. The senior, who plans to run at East Carolina University, has not jumped since then at the high school level but plans to run on the track Friday.
York Suburban junior Olivia Gettle returns as the distance champion in the 1,600 and 3,200, but Dallastown's Wildcat Invitational — a dress rehearsal for the school two weeks before the league meet — offered a strong performance by Kennard-Dale junior Maddie Ferner. After missing last spring recovering from a soccer injury, Ferner won both distance events two weeks ago.
West York's Luke Hoffman endured a torn oblique, which forced him to give up the javelin for the season. He didn't stop with the discus.
"It just feels better when I'm spinning," he said. "I kind of got used to it. It's better now."
Contact Matt Goul at 771-2045.
YAIAA TRACK AND FIELD CHAMPIONSHIPS
If you go: 4 p.m. today at Dallastown
Returning boys' champions
110 hurdles: Andrew Moyer, West York
800: Ethan Gatchell, Red Lion
Triple jump: Deshaun Horton, William Penn
Long jump: Deshaun Horton, William Penn
Pole vault: Danny Stoner, Biglerville
Returning girls' champions
100: Lynne Mooradian, South Western
200: Lynne Mooradian, South Western
400: Lynne Mooradian, South Western
1,600: Olivia Gettle, York Suburban
3,200: Olivia Gettle, York Suburban
Long jump: Angelica Gonzalez, Red Lion