Shriver goes up and over

Waynesburg Central’s Taylor Shriver clears her opening height of 10-9 on May 16 in the WPIAL Class AA Track & Field Championships at Slippery Rock University. The sophomore won the gold medal with a record-breaking vault of 12-7. (Photo by Jim Downey)

SLIPPERY ROCK — Waynesburg Central’s Taylor Shriver had a dominating performance in her gold medal-winning effort last Thursday at the WPIAL Class AAA/AA Track & Field Championships at Slippery Rock University.

Shriver won her gold medal in record-breaking style, breaking Waynesburg’s Marissa Kalsey’s mark of 12-6 set in 2012.

She easily cleared her opening height of 10-9, and only missed once as she climbed through 11-3, 12 feet and her winning vault of 12-7.

“I wanted 13 (feet), but I ran the 400 relay and my legs were tired by that point,” said Shriver. “I wanted consistency.

“I had to focus on me and myself. It’s hard to do with all the noise.”

Shriver added, “I owe so much to Coach (Butch) Brunell.”

Waynesburg Central’s Bree Echegaray fell short of the height she had hoped to clear, but safely got over the bar at 4-10 to finish fifth in the Class AA high jump and advance to the state meet.

“I didn’t clear 5 feet at all. It was not my best. I wanted to get at least 5-2,” said Echegaray. “But, I’m just happy I qualified (for states) now. “

Echegaray was injured her first two seasons, so she’ll be making her first trip to Shippensburg.

Teammate Juliana Fowler will also be attending her first PIAA final after finishing fourth in the Class AA long jump with a top distance of 16-5½. Fowler was tied for third heading into the finals, but slipped a couple places down in the final three jumps.

“I was trying to qualify for states. I’m beyond excited. It’s awesome,” said a smiling Fowler. “I always want to win, but it’s a big accomplishment to get there.

“I want to do the best I can.”

Waynesburg Central’s Madison Brooks closed her career with an eighth-place finish in the Class AA discus with a throw of 112-4.

West Greene freshman Brooke Barner finished sixth in the Class AA 400 with a time of 1:00.75 and will compete in the Class AA state meet after a top-5 finisher opted out of the 400.

Barner just missed qualifying for the WPIAL finals in the 200 by a mere .01 seconds after placing ninth in 26.61 seconds.

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