Pittston Area Cross Country Coach Dave Jiunta expects another competitive year for his Patriots harriers, and he expects the lead to come from senior Jamie Connors.
Connors will be the key runner for PA on this year’s squad as he laces up his running shoes for his final season.
“Jamie is going to be our leader this year,” Jiunta said. “We will be a strong and prepared team this year.”
Another key component for the Patriots will be senior Tyler Cummings. Jiunta expects Cummings to be one of the top runners for Pittston Area this season. Cummings finished 60th overall in last season’s District 2 Championships. He was the third overall Patriot in the race and was behind just Brandon Hampton and Dave McLean – who graduated.
“The boys will have their work cut out for them, since we lost Dave and Brandon,” Jiunta said. “We have some new faces that should help fill the void.”
The new faces Jiunta speaks of are seniors Pat Dougherty and Nick Holl, juniors Mike Senese and Cody McLean, and freshman Brandon Zaffuto. Rounding out the Patriots roster is sophomore Dimitrie Shea.
“Brandon had a great junior high career,” Jiunta said. “Pat Dougherty and Mike Senese will be counted on to round out the scoring.”
Jiunta had high praise for Senese.
“He has great potential as a distance runner,” Jiunta said. “He just has to work hard and everything will fall into place.”
The Patriots were 10-5 last season and will look to improve this season. Jiunta feels the key matches of the season will be on September 28 against Crestwood and Dallas, October 5 against Tunkhannock and Lake Lehman, and October 18 against Wyoming Seminary and Holy Redeemer at Kirby Park.