SHIPPENBURG – Little did Maddie Murphy know when she was a freshman and made her first podium appearance at the PIAA Track and Field Championships, that she would stand on the top step as the Class AA state champion in triple jump for her senior year.
The Bishop Carroll athlete fulfilled that dream on Saturday at Shippensburg University, winning with a jump of 37-10.75 to capture the first track and field gold medal in the history of the Ebensburg school. It was also Murphy's best triple jump at the state championships.
"It feels so good to be on top of that podium in front of the crowd," Murphy said. "I feel like I've been dreaming about this since my freshman year. It feels amazing. With the competition today, it made me nervous, but it also pushed me to do my best."
Murphy, who also played on the Huskies volleyball team, came into the PIAA Championships as the top seed in the event.
"I tried not to think about being the top seed and just tried to stay focused on jumping my best," said Murphy, whose career-best jump was 39-7.
Murphy noted the hard work that she put in each year in order to continue to achieve her goals, and that she has gotten plenty of family support to make it all possible.
"There was definitely a lot of hard work involved," Murphy said. "I would generally take a week off right after volleyball season and then start getting into the weight room to train for states.
"My family has been great. My aunts and uncles, my parents and grandparents were all here (Saturday), and my parents have always been there for me since way back in first grade when I started playing basketball. They come to every track meet and I can't thank them enough along with all of my coaches for all of the support they've given me."
Murphy will compete for St. Francis University next season.
"Freshman year, I didn't even think that I could make it to states and I ended up medaling and I pushed to medal ever year," Murphy said. "I wanted to get first every year, but to finally get it at states is an amazing feeling. This is how I wanted to end my career. I wasn't sure if I could coming in, but to finally get it feels really great."
The area's other area competitor in the triple jump, Meyersdale senior Bryia Swick finished 24th.