Fleming wows himself with long jump win

Published: 5/19/2017 10:00 AM
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WILLIAMSPORT – Julian Fleming provided more reasons for people to doubt that the Southern Columbia all-around athletes is truly only a freshman.

And Fleming even surprised himself Thursday afternoon when, on his final attempt of the day, he popped a personal-best long jump of 23 feet to win the gold medal in the District 4 Class AA championships at Williamsport High School’s STA Stadium.

“It came out of nowhere,” he said. “It was 21-7, then 21-9 (on his final jump in the trials) and then the 23 came out of nowhere.”

On that last one, I was just trying to go for 22, for my PR and I just got my legs out petty far, I guess,” he said.

Milton’s Keayon Williams, last year’s champion, will join Fleming in the state meet. “That will be fun and we’ll both get better from it,” said Fleming, who has followed outstanding rookie seasons in football and basketball to the track and field season

Fleming also ran a 22.93 to advance to Saturday’s finals of the AA 200-meter dash.

“Long jump is fun but at the beginning of the season, I wasn’t going to do it because it is hard on your knees,” Fleming said. “But I tried it one time and I went like 20 feet and I just kept doing it. I don’t have too many nerves, I just wanted to go out and try to compete at a high level.”

Fleming was the lone area athlete to punch a ticket to the state championships in Shippensburg next week on the first day of the two-day meet.

But several others earned medals and/or qualified for Saturday’s finals.

In Class AA, Mount Carmel’s Tanner Karycki placed fourth in the long jump (21-4) and Southern’s Noah Brecht was fifth (20-5). Southern’s Troy Donlan placed fifth in the shot put (43-9 ½).

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