Lake Effect team members to compete starting Friday at Virginia Horse Center in Lexington, Virginia
Two northwestern Pennsylvania students will saddle up during this weekend's Interscholastic Equestrian Association National Finals.
Sophomores Sydney Guthrie of Villa Maria and Summer Black of Warren qualified for the event, which starts Friday at the Virginia Horse Center in Lexington, Virginia. Each will represent the Lake Effect equestrian team.
Guthrie and Black are coached by Lindsay Filley, who has worked with them through Brenric Stables in Edinboro. Rick and Brenda Hall established their sanctioned equestrian facility off Route 99 in 1990.
Guthrie joined Lake Effect last August but has two years' worth of riding experience.
“I've always had an interest in horses and getting involved in the sport,” she said. “It's something I've more or less always wanted to do, but it wasn't until (last year) that I found the time to do it.”
Black and her family live in Saybrook, located in southeastern Warren County. She inherited a love of horses from her mother, Kim, who also grew riding horses, and her father, Jack, who built a small riding facility on their property to help spur interest in his children.
“It's incredible that I'm an IEA qualifier after two years,” Black said. “I'm very nervous about (the meet), but I'm also optimistic because of the training.”
The IEA, created in 2002, is comprised of more than 12,000 students in grades 6 through 12.
Guthrie and Black, like all who qualified this weekend, will compete on horses furnished to them through a blind draw.
• Seven individuals and one team will enter the McDowell Athletic Hall of Fame during the Night of the Trojan banquet April 29 at the Bel-Aire Clarion Hotel.
Among the individual honorees are: golf standout and football player David Ciacchini (1972 graduate), football All-American and former Ohio State tackle Kyle Mitchum (2004), former PIAA diving champion and Pitt diver Margo Ekstrom Donohue (2006), multi-sport standout and Indiana University football player Michael Stumpf (1990), track and field great Nicole Smith Faries (2005), golf state champion and Kent State golfer Sean Howell (2000) and basketball standout Theodore “Ted” Willis (1940), who will be inducted posthumously.
The 2004 girls water polo team also will be inducted. The Trojans won the state championship that year, led by seniors Katelyn Hansen, Alicia Sutton, Lorraine Negron, Ashley McLellan, Tenley Marsteller, Kelly Martin, Andrea Vasil and Katy Dail.
Cost is $30 per person. Get a reservation by calling 835-5401. Coacktails are at 6 p.m. followed by dinner at 7.
TRACK AND FIELD
• Many District 10 teams will be split between north and south meets Saturday.
Most will attend the City of Hermitage Invitational at Hickory. The host Hornets are one of 20 district schools that preregistered, with District 9's Moniteau and Redbank Valley also scheduled to appear.
Cathedral Prep and Hickory are the meet's defending team champs.
Erie County teams not bound for Mercer County are likely to make shorter trips to the Fairview Invitational.
The Tigers bid to host their meet in and around Keck Field at Jack Bestwick Stadium after previous events took place in early April, if held at all. Last season's competition was canceled because of inclement weather.
Fort LeBoeuf's girls and Fairview's boys were team champions for the 2015 meet.
Each meet starts at 9 a.m.
• The Seneca boys 3,200-meter relay team, which is the defending Class 2A state champion, will soon get a chance to test itself against top competition.
The Bobcats will compete in next week's Penn Relays at Franklin Field in Philadelphia.
BASEBALL AND TENNIS
• The first of two rivalry meetings between Cathedral Prep and McDowell will take place next week in each sport.
In baseball, the Ramblers and Trojans have a varsity game at Ainsworth Field on Monday. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 p.m.
May 15 is the date listed for the teams' 7 p.m. rematch at UPMC Park.
The Prep and McDowell tennis teams also meet for the first time Wednesday at 4 p.m. Those matches will be at Pennbriar Athletic Club, where the Trojans are hosting this year due to the renovation of their campus courts.
The teams have a second Region 4 dual scheduled for May 3 at Frontier Park.
Mike Copper can be reached at 870-1614 or by email. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/ETNcopper.