Palmyra’s rapidly improving Yanick leads Group 1 shot put field

Palmyra senior Matt Yanick re-affirmed his rightful spot atop the New Jersey Group 1 shot put field Friday when he won the Central Jersey Group 1 title with a 51-3 throw.

Yanick won by more than four feet over senior Julian Govenette of Haddon Township, who threw 46-10 1/4.

Yanick has been the state’s best Group 1 thrower all year and has a PR and school record of 52-7 1/2 from the South Jersey Throwdown at Cherokee on Tuesday night. He first entered the 50-foot ranks at another Throwdown at Cherokee back in mid-January.

But don’t get used to seeing him bomb these 50-foot throws every weekend.

Yanick’s track career is almost over.

More on that later.

First, let’s take a look at what he’s accomplished and what he still has to shoot for.

√ Yanick on Friday became Palmyra’s first sectional shot put champ in 12 years, since Kyle Myers won the South Jersey Group 1 title outdoors in 2004 with a 50-0 ¾ throw at Egg Harbor.

√ Yanick’s winning throw is the best at any Group 1 sectional in six years, since two throwers in 2010, one from South Jersey, one from North Jersey.

√ The only throwers since the inception of the indoor sectionals in 2008 to throw farther than Yanick in Group 1 action are Dontae Rivera of Pleasantville, who did it twice  [54-3  in both 2011 and 2012], and Patrick Cole of Hasbrouck Heights, who won the 2011 North Jersey Section 1 meet with a throw of 52-3.

√ Yanick’s winning throw is second-best of any shot putter in any South Jersey sectional this winter, behind only Timber Creek’s Osemwingie Asemota, who threw 54-5 1/2 to win Group 3.

√ Yanick’s winning throw is second-best of any shot putter in any South Jersey sectional this winter, behind only Timber Creek’s Osemwingie Asemota, who threw 54-5 1/2 to win Group 3.

√ Yanick is the No. 1 seed in Group 1 states Friday back in Toms River. He’ll be trying to become Palmyra’s first state champion in the shot put in 28 years, since Ron Trampe’s shot put-discus double at outdoor states – 52-11 1/2 and 148-11.

So why is Yanick’s career coming to a close when he’s improving so much?

His first love is baseball, and as soon as Meet of Champions is over, he’ll join the Palmyra baseball team, and next fall he’ll start at Rutgers, where he’ll also play baseball.

But there are still a few meets to go and a few records to chase before Yanick starts hitting a round ball as far as he can instead of throwing it as far as he can.

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