Zach McCann never had a track and field season. Football was always his thing.
But both St. Pius X seniors came out of the first day of the District 1 Class AA Championships in a golden way, with Dubinski capturing the triple jump with a 39-11 1/2, and McCann winning the shot put with a 44-6 1/2 Friday, at Coatesville High School.
"I finally get to states and I got my gold medal," Dubinski said. "I'm just real happy. Winning this meant a lot. All of our guys came in mentally prepared because we know we have a shot."
And after the first day of competition, the Pius boys are in first place in Class AA with 27 points, ahead of Girard College (19), Octorara and Bristol (both with eight).
The Winged Lions' Trevor Stine took the silver in the javelin with a 148-8, Justin Kaplan grabbed bronze in the triple jump (36- 4 1/40), Chris Furches placed sixth in the triple jump (36-1 1/2) and Jonathan Dobry notched sixth in the javelin (140-0), and all with the morning rain coming down hard.
"It really started pouring but we knew what we had to do," Dubinski said. "And I was jumping under the same conditions as everybody else. It was more mental than physical today. I came in seeded ninth, but I knew I could do better. The coaches came up to the seniors (Thursday) and told us we had a shot of winning it to motivate all the younger guys, help get them focused.
"Last year I had a lot of injuries, my shins, a pulled calf muscle. It was really difficult last year. I trained a lot in the winter, lifted a lot of weights. My times jumped a lot, my long jump got a lot better. The triple jump is probably my worst event, just the constant pounding on my shins and with my ankles."
The long jump is more his forte and he will try to go for that title this morning. He will also run the 200 and 400.
For McCann, seeded fourth, it was a super way to both make his district debut and at the same time say his district goodbye. Pius throwing coach Bob Reisemiller convinced him to give the shot put a try.
"It's my first year of throwing and I didn't think I would do good," McCann said. "I just wanted to come out and try to get in shape for college for football. Coach Bob (Reismiller) said, 'Why don't you try the shot put, you're a strong guy with good hips, you got quick feet.' At first I didn't necessarily like it, but I started getting better and better at it and now I'm going to states.
"It wasn't my best throw this year. The weather was kind of bad. Coming in coach Bob told me that if I finished fourth, we'd only get two points. This gives us 10 points, brings us a little closer to the district title."
Veteran Pius head coach Ed Dobry glanced at the seeding sheet Tuesday and instantly recognized the golden team opportunity.
"They had us behind by nine points against Harriton, Christopher Dock and Lower Moreland," Dobry said. "Now we are getting more points in different areas, looking strong. The kids did tremendous that first day. It could be very interesting (Saturday)."