High school notebook: Keeping up with the Martins
Twin brothers Colin and Ethan Martin of Fox Chapel now have twin accomplishments.
Both juniors, they have become two of the elite distance runners in the WPIAL. The duo is staying sharp in the offseason with some indoor success.
Colin Martin took first place in the 3,000-meter run (9:00.30) and Ethan Martin won the mile-run (4:24.61) at the most recent Tri-State Track Coaches Association meet at Edinboro University.
Both advance to the Tri-State Championship on Feb. 16.
Ethan Martin's time in the mile broke a school record. He also set a new mark in the 800-meter run.
The Martins — and several teammates — will be looking to earn berths in the PTFCA Indoor Championships on Feb. 23 at Penn State.
Tackett to Kiski Prep
Knoch senior Ben Tackett has made a habit out of playing two sports, excelling in football and lacrosse. He won't have to break that habit for at least another year. Tackett has decided to attend The Kiski School in Saltsburg for a post-graduate year before deciding on a college.
A running back, Tackett was one of the WPIAL's top rushers last season. He also was a 50-plus-goal scorer in lacrosse for Knoch.
Choma, Mills join hall
Highlands Boys Basketball Boosters has started a Hall of Fame and honored its first two inductees Tuesday night.
Mike Choma and Glenn Mills, longtime supporters of the program, received plaques for their work and dedication.
Choma, the Golden Rams' TV personality, and Mills, perhaps best known for his involvement in the Cager Classic all-star games, have been part of Highlands basketball for decades.
“Over the last 40 years we've been involved in all aspects of the program from the elementary to the high school and it was their way of showing their appreciation of our efforts,” Choma said. “It was very nice of them to do.”
The boosters plan to induct players and coaches in the future. A Hall of Fame plaque will be placed in the team room at the school and names will be added.
Ex-Valley coaches do well
East Allegheny's boys basketball team is making history this season, and a local coach is leading the charge.
Former Valley coach Vern Benson has the Wildcats in the WPIAL playoffs for the first time since 1996. East Allegheny had the second-longest playoff drought in the WPIAL next to West Greene, which hasn't made it since 1992.
Meantime, Wayne Greiser, who was Benson's assistant at Valley, is head coach of the Yough boys team that is headed to the WPIAL playoffs for the first time since the 2006-07 season.
Bill Beckner Jr. is the local sports editor of the Valley News Dispatch. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.