In the heart of winter, Perkiomen Valley High School hosted its inaugural Shot Put Night in the Valley Holiday Throw Down, an indoor shot put-only meet that drew participants from 15 teams. The gym floor transformed with wrestling mats, divided into boys on the left and girls on the right, set the stage for a unique and focused competition.
The meet, unlike the typical multifaceted track and field events, showcased the shot putters in the spotlight. Mr. Petsko, the coach of Perkiomen Valley’s track and field team, highlighted the significance of the event, providing more opportunities for shot putters who often have limited chances to compete in standard track meets.
“This is the first time we’ve done one in December, so we’ve decided to expand this year. It’s a lot of fun for the kids,” Petsko said.
The Shot Put Night featured a lineup of numerous athletes, with the boys’ throws ranging from 19 to 60 feet. Notable PV competitors included Colin Sturges, Edward Smith Jr. and Nolan Keeley who hurled the shot put distances of 43-01.00ft, 42-06.50ft, and 33-10.50ft respectively.
Among the girls, top performers included Ava Flicker, Abigail Lieb, Leah Weldon and Emelia Flynn who threw 31-00.75ft, 29-04.25ft, 27-11.25ft, and 26-08.50ft respectively.
The event provided each athlete with three throws and a practice round, emphasizing precision on wrestling mats. The gym buzzed with activity as people, including officials, were on the sidelines ensuring throws adhered to regulations.
Following the meet, Abigail Lieb, a second-year shot putter who achieved a personal record, shared her routine and mindset.
“My routine always starts with my mom braiding my hair before I stretch and do all of my exercises to warm up. I was nervous at first considering this was my first shot put night ever, but I took a breath as I got set to throw the shot,” Lieb said.
Emelia Flynn, another shot putter, reflected on the challenges posed by the gym floor.
“The surface we throw on at this meet, the gym floor, is not ideal for throwing so that is always a challenge,” Flynn said.
As the meet concluded, top finishers were awarded with medals. Among the results, Sturges was PV’s top male shot putter coming in 5th place overall. On the female front, notable achievements were made by Flicker, Lieb, Weldon and Flynn who placed 1st, 5th, 6th, and 8th respectively.
“The Shot Put Night in the Valley was a lot of fun. I had a great time at this event. But this was just another meet to see how far I can throw, but now we just prepare for the next meet and work hard to throw further,” Smith Jr., reflecting on his experience, said.
Witness the PV track and field team in action at their upcoming league meets: catch the girls on January 5th at Alvernia and the boys on January 6th at Lehigh University. Notably, save the date for the 12th annual Shot Put Night in the Valley on February 6th.