Atkins, Fedrizzi, Bupp top seeds at WPIAL championships

May 14—Two returning individual champions and three top overall seeds highlight Lawrence County's contingent at Wednesday's WPIAL track and field championship meet.

The combined Class 2A and 3A meet, held at Slippery Rock University, begins with running preliminaries and field events at 11 a.m. Wednesday. Track events will start with 2A girls and 3A girls then proceed to 2A boys and 3A boys.

Laurel's Tori Atkins, a junior, is the two-time defending champion in the Class 2A 200 and 400 meters. She has run the fastest time this season, 24.87, to earn the top seed in the 200, while she's the fifth seed in the 400 and third in the 100.

Atkins earned state runner-up honors last year at the state meet.

Mohawk hurdler Ellie Whippo is the second seed in both the 100- and 300-meter hurdles.

New Castle's Kaevon Gardner is the returning Class 3A 100-meter dash champion. The junior will defend his title as the seventh seed.

Mohawk and Ellwood City Lincoln have top Class 2A boys contenders on the track.

Nick Franitti of Ellwood City is the third seed in the 110 hurdles and fifth seed in the 300 hurdles. Mohawk's Jaxon Schoedel, the PIAA Class 2A cross country champion last fall and a bronze medalist in the 3200 last spring, is the fourth seed in the 1600. Meanwhile, Ellwood City's Drew Steffler is the third seed and Mohawk's Scott McConnell fourth in the 3200.

Schoedel is the seventh seed in that race. In the mid-distance, Ellwood's Colton Critzer is the second seed in the 800 meters, while his school's 4x800 (second) and 4x400 (fourth) relays are within striking distance of the medal stand.

Lawrence County athletes should expect some medals returning home in the field events in both the boys and girls competitions of both classifications.

Zoe Bupp is the top overall seed in the Class 2A discus, where her Shenango teammates Rachel Callahan and Maria Bryant are seeded right behind her with Laurel's Alexis Geiwitz fifth and Amara McKissick eighth.

In the high jump, Neshannock's Ava Koski is the third seed, Ellwood's Delaney Sturgeon fifth and Shenango's Abigail Bulow is sixth.

Shenango's Sara Roe is the second seed in the long jump and fourth in the triple jump. Teammate Addy Kays is the fifth seed in the long jump.

Bupp, Geiwitz, Bryant and McKinley are the two, three, four and sixth seeds in the shot put.

In the Class 2A boys field events, Colton Fedrizzi is the No. 1 seed in the shot put. He's followed there by Laurel's Kevin Mahoney (third) and teammate Levi Stuck (sixth). Fedrizzi is the second seed in the discus, while Mahoney is fourth, Stuck fifth and Shenango's Blaise Dando is sixth.

Union's Elliot Liskooka is the three seed in the javelin, while Shenango's Jacob Bupp is the sixth seed in the pole vault.

New Castle has a handful of medal contenders in the Class 3A field events.

In the girls competition, Raegan Hudson is the sixth seed in the long jump. She and Rylei Clark will also compete in the triple jump.

In the boys field, Jaden Kirkwood is the second seed in the shot put and sixth in the discus. Nate McKnight is the fifth seed in the long jump, while Kyrell Harris is the third seed in the triple jump.