Spring athletes prepare for final competitions

As the school year comes to an end, student athletes prepare for the peak of the season. The spring teams continue their seasons hoping to make it to Mid-Penn Championships, Districts and hopefully State competitions.
Get up. Senior Josiah Treece jumps over the hurdle in the 300 meter  hurdle race. Competing against Hollidaysburg, the boys team won with a team score of 105-45 (Altoona). (Picture Courtesy of Marli Closson).
Get up. Senior Josiah Treece jumps over the hurdle in the 300 meter hurdle race. Competing against Hollidaysburg, the boys’ team won with a team score of 105-45 (Altoona). (Picture Courtesy of Marli Closson).
Kihlee Noel

The boys’ baseball team recently became back-to-back champions at the Curve Classic Invitational. Sophomore Tanner Stoup was the only starter to return for the team and was the MVP of the classic.

“The work began as soon as the last game of last season was over,” Stroup said. “I knew coming back for my sophomore year we were going to be an even better team. Winning the Curve Classic and being able to play at a stadium like that is so cool as a high schooler. All the guys on the team put in the work this year. We worked all off season trying to get stronger and better at what was needed out of each one of us.”

Stroup feels the team has had a successful season so far. They have beaten rival State College both times they have played them after not beating them either time last year. However, they suffered a loss in the District 6 playoffs.

“Beating State College was the greatest feeling so far this year,” Stroup said. “After losing the District 6 playoff against them, I knew what I wanted to do the next year. Playing them again twice this year our team came in with a lot of fire wanting to beat them every time we faced them for the next upcoming year and all the guys played hard, and we got the two wins.”

Stroup has had a successful personal season too. He leads the team in home runs with two so far this season. He is also the tied leader for stolen bases and second for batting averages. Sophomore Dante Larocco leads the team in batting averages. 

“I always go up with the same approach,” Larocco said. “I just stay consistent and work hard in practice and the results show.

The team has goals of going into Districts.

“The hope for the team for the rest of the season is winning the District 6 title,” Stroup said. “Everyone knows the task at hand and is willing to take the challenge head-on. I also hope that we can go above and beyond the D6 game and go win a state championship.”

Currently, the boys are 8-5 overall and 4-5 in their conference. 


After starting the season off 0-10, the girls’ softball team is trying to gain their first win. Last year, the team went 1-15 overall. 

Sophomore Kendall Cogan has started on varsity for the past two years. She has been playing softball since she was in fourth grade. 

“We have a young team,” Cogan said. “We have a lot of freshmen and sophomores on varsity. I think we will just get better as time goes on. We just need to get more experienced.”

Even though the team has suffered from many losses, the team keeps their energy and motivation up.

“We are just trying to stay a team,” Cogan said. “It wouldn’t make us any better if we all got mad at each other every time someone made a mistake. We just try to keep the energy up.”

Continuing through the season the team plans to improve.

“I think if we just try to keep our head up we will improve with time,” Cogan said. 

This is freshman Vionna Jackson’s first year on the night school team. Jackson hopes to continue to improve with the season they have left. 

“I think all of the freshmen have improved this season,” Jackson said.” I think we all will just continue to improve as we go through the high school years.” 


Boys’ tennis

The boys’ tennis team recently hosted the District playoff on Tuesday April 30. 

Sophomore Aiden Aiken had been on the team for two years. Aiken and his partner, senior Brady Sassano competed together in the District doubles playoff but suffered a loss to State College. 

“It was a little disappointing having the season end like that, but at the same time, I do feel like we (Aiken and Sassano) worked hard,” Aiken said. 

Early in the season, the double partners won the Central Mountain tournament. 

“We got placed together for the two matches before then so I feel like that helped us to win in the tournament,” Aiken said. 

The whole team will participate in the team district playoffs. The team will have to win three single-player games and two double-player games to win. 

“We are hoping to get put in the bracket so that we play Shikellamy first instead of Hollidaysburg. It would be beneficial for us to have an easier game before playing Hollidaysburg,” Aiken said. 

The team district matches will take place Monday May, 6. 

Track and field

The girls’ track and field team has had an extremely successful season as they have gone undefeated in all of their dual and single meets. The team has also placed in the top three team scores in all of their invitational meets.

Recently, some of the girls went to the international meet in Philadelphia, Penn Relays. The girls’ 4×100 meter relay placed 8th overall out of 40 teams with a time of 50.91. The 4×400 meter relay placed 6th overall out of 16 with a time of 4:11.57. 

Sophomore Brooklyn Weaver has gone to the meet both her freshman and sophomore years. 

I‘m grateful for the opportunity to go and run at Penn Relays at Franklin Field to compete against other high schools all over the world,” Weaver said. “This is something not everyone gets to be part of. I’m also lucky to be able to go two years in a row as a freshman and sophomore with my team.

The boys’ team, even though having some significant performances, has suffered with team scores. 

Derron Jones has been on the track team for two years. Jones hopes the team can improve in their consistency. 

Boys’ volleyball

Senior Sam Kessinger is finishing his high school career with a great season. Last year, Kessinger hit his 1,000 assists as the team’s setter. This season Kessinger set a new school record with 1747 career assists. 

“I felt very proud of myself, and honored to achieve such a big accomplishment,” Kessinger said. “I also was very thankful for my family, teammates, and coaches for helping me to get to this point.”

The team has a 9-6 overall record and 2 tie matches this season. Through the rest of the season, Altoona will have to face rival State College one more time in the District 6 championship. 

Our plan is to try to emulate the way we played when we beat them before, by creating lots of energy and staying together as a team,” Kessinger said.  

As the season comes to an end, the team hopes to stay focused on district championships and continue their season. 

“We just need to stay focused on our goals that we set at the beginning of the season,” Kessinger said. “Once we get to these games, we need to remember that we are a great team, and we can play with and beat any team that we go up against.” 

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