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TRACK & FIELD: Palmyra collects a pair of gold medals at Mid Penns

CHAMBERSBURG >> The day started brilliantly for Palmyra's track & field team on Saturday.

In the very first event at the Mid Penn Conference championships, the girls 4x800 relay raced to victory, and the Cougars added five more medals before the day's end.

"For me, Miranda (Salvo) and Maria (Tukis), that was the fourth time we've won Mid Penns," said anchor Katie Dembrowski. "We've won every year since we were freshmen, so it was really nice to keep that streak going."

The trio teamed up with Jess Dembrowski to win the event in 9:27.54. They were 10 seconds and one place ahead of their seed, upsetting the strong Cumberland Valley squad.

Palmyra also got an unexpected victory from Alex Hoffsmith, who was seeded just sixth in the boys javelin heading into Saturday. Hoffsmith shattered his season best effort, hitting a throw of 174-11 to earn a gold medal. His mark was more than three feet farther than the rest of the field.

Katie Dembrowski then added a silver medal to the Cougars' haul with a second-place finish in the 800. She clocked in at 2:19.86.

"The first lap was probably the better half, and especially with the heat, that second lap can be a little rough," Dembrowski said. "But I definitely felt a lot better than when I ran the 4x8 in the morning, and I did as well as my seed, so I was happy with that."

Also for Palmyra's girls team, Salvo placed seventh in the 1,600 (5:15.18) and Kristen Smoluk tied for eighth in the high jump (5-0).

Mason Cooper rounded out the medals for the Cougars. Like Hoffsmith, Cooper was seeded only sixth heading into the boys discus, but a throw of 140-0 earned him a bronze medal.