Graduating track stars leave their mark at RHS

JOANNE DEGNAN/The Robbinsville Sun Craig Hunter and Noel Jancewicz, shown here with their RHS 2013 Athletes of the Year, have left their mark on Robbinsville High School athletics.

JOANNE DEGNAN/The Robbinsville Sun
Craig Hunter and Noel Jancewicz, shown here with their RHS 2013 Athletes of the Year, have left their mark on Robbinsville High School athletics.

It is only fitting that two high-flying seniors raised the bar to new levels for their Robbinsville High School track and field teams.

Craig Hunter and Noel Jancewicz were recently named the RHS Male and Female Athletes of the Year, and they may be the most successful athletes to ever pass through the school.

“That was great,” Jancewicz said. “I wasn’t even expecting it. I didn’t think I’d get Athlete of the Year. That was really exciting.”

Jancewicz had to wait until this year to win the first Meet of Champions title in girls program history. She captured the girls high jump at the outdoor MOC last month with a clearance of 5-foot-8.

“I’m really happy with the season, especially Meet of Champs,” Jancewicz said. “That was something I’ve been trying to do for so long. The whole season, I was clearing 5-6 and I was getting a little frustrated. I was having doubts going into the Meet of Champs. When I cleared 5-8, it was the best feeling.”

Hunter last year became the first Ravens athlete to win a Meet of Champions title when he won the boys pole vault at the indoor and outdoor MOC. He has gone on this year to establish a new personal-record 16-feet-6 to win the Mercer County Championship and tie the second-best jump in state history.

“I never thought in my years before pole vaulting I’d end up in this position,” Hunter said. “I can go a lot of places and people know what I do. I never thought anyone would be able to know that. I didn’t think I’d put Robbinsville on the map in terms of track.”

Both closed their scholastic careers June 16 with the Ravens by competing at the New Balance Outdoor Nationals. Hunter cleared 15-foot 8¼ inches for seventh place in the pole vault, while Jancewicz jumped 5 feet 4 inches for 12th place.

“Nationals was supposed to be the last hurrah,” Hunter said. “That kind of fizzled, instead of going out with a bang.”

He had worked tirelessly every day since a shocking miss kept him from making the MOC, and when he opened nationals with a clearance by more than a foot of the 15-8 opening height, he felt ready for a huge day. He may have been a bit too excited by his first clearance as he did not clear another height, but there was a silver lining.

“I opened at 15-8, that’s not something to shrug off,” Hunter said. “That’s a huge height. That’s what I’m going to have to open at in college.”

The University of Connecticut-bound Hunter is looking forward to competing at the next level.

“It’ll be a transition to a completely new environment,” he said. “I don’t think it’ll be as difficult a transition for me because I’ve been around those big meets. I think the competitions will be different. I won’t have a problem getting used to it. I’m just hoping I’m still enjoying it.”

He will still be representing Robbinsville as he soars higher and higher. He has done his part to bring some attention to the budding Ravens.

“Every time, it’s always been a pleasure to say I’m from Robbinsville,” Hunter said. “The school has given me a lot of opportunities that I don’t think I’d have at a lot of other places. They’ve worked with me and helped get things done. They’ve guided me. I was able to return the favor by doing something I love to do.”

Just as Hunter had shown that boys could vault to the top of the state, Jancewicz has done the same on the girls side this year.

“That feels great,” Jancewicz said. “That just adds to it. I’ve been wanting to do it. I knew I had a shot at it since freshman year. It seems like every year something didn’t go my way. As soon as I jumped at 5-8, I knew I was going to clear it. I even had a good jump at 5-10, but didn’t get it.”

Jancewicz’s high jump ability is only one part of her talents. At the University of Pennsylvania next year, she will be a multi-sport athlete. She has developed into one of the state’s top 400 runners, and at nationals, she also ran the 4×800 for the Ravens and did so in a personal-best 2:19 split. At Penn, she will be adding even more events, not bad for someone that never saw this in her future.

“Coming in freshman year, I didn’t have any expectations,” Jancewicz said. “I almost didn’t do track. I almost did basketball in the winter. The first season I did it, I PR’d in high jump and realized I could go pretty far. I’m happy with how it went. It couldn’t have gone any better.”

 

 


Warning: file_get_contents(http://graph.facebook.com/comments/?ids=http%3A%2F%2Frobbinsvillesun.com%2F2013%2F06%2F20%2Fgraduating-track-stars-leave-their-mark-at-rhs%2F) [function.file-get-contents]: failed to open stream: HTTP request failed! HTTP/1.1 400 Bad Request in /home/content/85/10397585/html/wp-content/themes/robbinsvillesun/functions.php on line 524

Warning: Invalid argument supplied for foreach() in /home/content/85/10397585/html/wp-content/themes/robbinsvillesun/functions.php on line 529

Warning: Invalid argument supplied for foreach() in /home/content/85/10397585/html/wp-content/themes/robbinsvillesun/functions.php on line 534

Warning: Invalid argument supplied for foreach() in /home/content/85/10397585/html/wp-content/themes/robbinsvillesun/single.php on line 277