By DICK VanOLINDA/505-5047/@ydsports
When Central’s Jay Stone decided to add a third event to his schedule for this weekend’s District 3 Track and Field Meet, it didn’t take long to make a selection.
“The 400 was my best event in middle school, so I picked it back up,” the junior said. “I don’t know if I’ll run the 400 at states because my heart is with the hurdles.”
Stone’s passion for the hurdles has earned him numerous accolades in championship meets and invitationals.
He won both the 110 hurdles and 300 hurdles at the 2012 District 3 Class AAA Track and Field Meet, and last Friday night, Stone broke an 18-year-old York-Adams League Meet record by winning the 110 hurdles in a time of 14.14 seconds.
Stone will enter this year’ district meet at Shippensburg University on Friday with the fastest time in the 110 hurdles and the third-best time (:38.58) in the 300 hurdles. He’s seeded second in the 400 dash at :49.23.
“In the high hurdles (110), it’s all about me, I just take off and go and don’t even think about who is next to me,” Stone said. “In the 400 hurdles and 400 (Stone ran the 400 hurdles at this year’s Penn Relays and plans to compete in the event in college), I like to be able to see everyone and then with about 200 meters remaining, I’ll let loose.”
Stone has some times in mind that he would like to hit in his trio of events at districts.
“I’m thinking about hopefully breaking 14 (seconds) in the 110s, I’ve been working to get the 38.55 in the 300s down, and in the 400, I’m hoping to run in the mid to low 48s.”
Districts, of course, is the penultimate meet of the season. States, which is scheduled for May 24-25, also at Shippensburg University, is the ultimate event of the high school season. Stone’s track and field season, though, won’t end at states.
Headed to Puerto Rico: He’s been selected to compete with the United States team in the Caribbean School Invitational on June 7-8 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. It will be the second prestigious meet in three months for Stone, who finished fifth in the high school 400 hurdles while competing against an elite field at the Penn Relays.
“I did not think for one second that I was going to get picked for the Caribbean meet,” he said. “I’m really looking forward to it. Being at the Penn Relays was amazing. All those people, and so many athletes running so fast.”
Stone’s agenda also includes a trip to the New Balance Outdoor Nationals Meet from June 14-16 in Greensboro, N.C.
It’s not all track, all the time, though, for Stone. He also plays football at Central.
“I’ve started to think about college, but I haven’t made any decision yet,” he said. “Wherever I go, I want to return kicks (as well as compete on the track-and-field team).”
Other area top seeds: Stone is one of five York-Adams athletes who will enter the district meet with the top performance of the season in an event.
Sarah Hunt of Fairfield earned the top seed in both the Girls’ Class AA long jump and triple jump with leaps of 17 feet, 10 inches and 35-11 1/4, respectively.
York High’s Anderson Novalin is top seeded in the Boys’ Class AAA shot put at 53-2, and South Western’s Holly Arey has the longest throw in the Girls’ Class AAA discus at 129-10. York Tech’s Ronald Henderson shares the best performance in the Boys’ Class AAA triple jump (45-31/2) with Isa Paschall of Carlisle.
– Reach Dick VanOlinda at email@example.com.