The chance to square off against premier competition in big events seems to drive Payden Montana to perform at her best.
Thursday, it led the Berwick star thrower to big things.
Montana not only broke her own school record, she finally broke the 50-foot mark by unleashing a throw of 50-7 to win the high school girls shot put competition at the prestigious Penn Relays.
“It was several girls and they were all pretty close in PRs (personal records),” Montana said. “I think that’s why I did well. I like big competition. That seems to make me perform better.”
It was the second straight year the Wyoming Valley Conference came away from the Penn Relays with a first-place finish.
Before graduating, former Coughlin standout Madisyn Hawkins won the 2017 high school girls pole vault by clearing 12-7.5, while Pittston Area’s Abby Norwillo finished third as a junior last year with a height of 12-3.5.
Norwillo came back to match that 12-3.5 Thursday and finished fifth in the high school girls pole vault, which Alana Carrol of Averill Park High School in New York won with a height of 12-11.5.
BOYS TRACK AND FIELD
Coughlin 81, Wyoming Area 69
Jevone Young and Cole Horan won two individual events and the Crusaders won their first meet of the season.
GAR 77, Northwest 71
Curtis Smith won the 200 and 400 dashes, the high jump and was on the winning 1,600 relay team to lift the Grenadiers to victory Tuesday.
GIRLS TRACK AND FIELD
Coughlin 79, Wyoming Area 70
Emma Fortune won the 800 and 1,600 runs as the Crusaders edged the Warriors.
Maddy Resciniti set a new Wyoming Area school record with a discus throw of 107-0 and also won the shot put and javelin throws.
Northwest 112, GAR 25
Tess Edwards won the 800 run and triple jump and and anchored the winning 3,200 relay to spark the Rangers in a Tuesday meet.
Crestwood 17, Pittston Area 2
Natasha Koslop had six goals and Emily Roberts added four for Crestwood,
Lily Savoy and Bailey Jordan scored for Pittston Area.
Dallas 11, Coughlin 8
Lauren Delamater scored four goals and Sam Banks and Melinda Ratchford netted two apiece for Dallas.
Jolene Ulichney had three goals for Coughlin. .
Crestwood 3, Wyoming Valley West 2
Julien Lacoste and Alex Covelens won at second and third singles, respectively, while Brayden Fenwick and Noah Partington prevailed at second doubles to lift the Comets over the Spartans.
Tunkhannock 4, MMI Prep 0
Alex Keiser overcame a first-set loss at No. 2 singles to rally for the win in the Tigers’ sweep.
Tunkhannock 3, Nanticoke Area 0
Avery Billings made nine kills and Paul Binner finished with nine assists as the Tigers swept to a 25-14, 25-10, 25-16 victory. Stephen Kirby served five aces in the win.
Carlos Castillo had five kills and eight digs for the Trojans, who also received six blocks and nine assists from Tyler Rushton.
Reach Paul Sokoloski at 570-829-7143 or on Twitter @TLPaulSokoloski