OSCEOLA – Two outstanding York News-Times area athletes won the highest honor given at the 2012 CRC Track and Field Championships.
The Gale Arnett Memorial Award for the outstanding girl went to McCool Junction junior Brooklyn Swantek. The male version of the Arnett was presented to Parker Anderson of Cross County High School after the Crossroads Conference Track and Field Championships held April 28 at Osceola. The award is given each year to the meet’s outstanding male and female athletes.
Swantek won the 800, the 1600, the 3200 and the pole vault.
Last year she won the 1600, 3200 and pole vault at the district meet and was second in the 1600 at state. Her career best in the pole vault stands at 9 feet, 10 inches.
“I knew I had to win four events” to get the Arnett, “and then the coaches have to vote on you,” she said, explaining that sportsmanship is part of the criteria, too.
The daughter of Pat and Tammy Swantek acknowledged she had some extra motivation.
“Since fifth or sixth grade” the Arnett “has been my goal,” she said, in no small part because her big sister won the Arnett twice. That brought an element of friendly sibling rivalry into the award, too.
Her sister Nicky White graduated in 2000 at McCool Junction.
Anderson explained that prior to the CRC meet, head coach Ty Twarling told the team the story about Gale Arnett for whom the award is named.
“Mr. Koinzan (Dennis) told me the day before about Gale Arnett Award, and I knew after I heard the story about Gale Arnett, this was an award I really wanted to win” said Anderson. “The story behind the award was something that really motivated me and I really focused on winning the award when I ran that day.”
Anderson said to be named the Arnett award winner is something he won’t forget.
“It meant a lot since this award is voted on by the coaches. It stays at the school for one year and then is given out again next year at the CRC Track Meet. I really feel honored to have won this award.”
Anderson, the son of Brian and Kelli Anderson, hopes to return to the state meet this year. As a sophomore he was on the Cross County 4x100 relay team that made the trip to Omaha Burke Stadium.
Both athletes will be competing in their respective district track meets this week.
Swantek will be in action today at Heartland at the Class D-5 district meet, while Anderson will run on his home track at Cross County on Thursday in the Class C-8 district.