By: John Raffel
Ithaca throwers looking for success
Ithaca throwers Alex VanDeWeghe and Bailey Chaffin are looking to have big seasons for the Yellow Jackets this spring as juniors.
VanDeWeghe competed during the indoor season. He placed third at a Saginaw Valley indoor meet with a throw of 55’10” and won the 25-pound weight throw with a distance of 62’2”. He competed at the new Balance Nationals indoor meet and had a PR of 56’7.14” for 18th in the shot put and 54’ 3 ¼” for 36th in the weight throw.
Last season, VanDeWeghe was impressive in the shot put with several first place finishes, including at the TVC West meet and the regionals. He took third at the state finals and threw a PR of 56’0” at the New Balance Nationals outdoor meet, where he took second.
He was also conference and regional champ in the discus and took 12th place at the state meet. His PR is 154’10”.
“It’s been great to make a contribution to the team,” he said.
This season VanDeWeghe’s biggest goal is to place well at state and throw as far as he can.
“Probably right now, I’m strongest in the shot put,” he said. “A lot of it is physical conditioning at the time and how your technique is doing.”
VanDeWeghe is confident his team can score a lot of points in the throws.
“We have a lot of potential with teammates like Baylee Chaffin,” VanDeWeghe said. “Overall, as a team, we should be doing well. We’re coming off a league championship from last year. In the league, the biggest competition in throws and overall as a team will probably be Ovid-Elsie; Hemlock has some strong throwers too.”
Chaffin has also had an impressive indoor season in the throws. He was fifth in the 12-pound shot put at 51’9” and seventh in the weight throw at 51’ 4 ½” at the Saginaw Valley indoor meet. He placed third at another indoor meet at Saginaw Valley. His personal record in the shot put last spring was a 52’6 ½” at the state finals for fifth place. He had taken second at the regional. He was fourth at the regional in the discus.