Track & field: Local group ready to compete at U.S. championships

More than a dozen local athletes, Penn State students and Penn State graduates are scheduled to compete at the U.S. Track and Field Championships at Drake University this week.

Starting the list in the senior meet on Thursday evening is the women’s javelin with State College’s Lauren Kenney and Lewistown’s Laura Loht, a rising junior and senior, respectively, at Penn State. Both are in the field of 13 scheduled to throw.

Also competing is Penn State graduate and 2012 Olympian Bridget Franek in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, while another alumnus, Karaleigh Millhouse Foster, is in the 10,000 meters. State College cross country and track coach Rebecca Donaghue also will be running in the 10K.

On the men’s side, Penn State’s Casimir Loxsom and Brannon Kidder will be running in the 800 while teammate Robby Creese will run in the 1,500. In the shot put, former Nittany Lion Joe Kovacs and current volunteer assistant coach Ryan Whiting are among the 20 competitors. Whiting also was a member of the U.S. Olympic team last summer.

In the junior championships also set for Drake, Michael Shuey will throw in the javelin, Tori Gerlach will compete in the 3,000 steeplechase, Kiah Seymour is set for the 400 hurdles and Rachel Fatherly is in the shot put, hammer and discus.