Bangor's Pearson, Stroudsburg's Northern expecting more

Two are among District 11's top athletes

Bangor's Bryan Pearson threw the discus at least 181 feet twice and hurled the shot put a school-record distance all on the same day last month.

Then the junior went to work.

Natural talent got Pearson that far. He wants more.

"Hitting those marks, I was like, 'OK. I did that. But it's still early in the season,' " he said. "There's a lot more to do."

Pearson hit 181 feet, 4 inches to finish fourth in the discus at Penn Relays. Later that day, he won the Allen Invitational with a throw of 181 feet. He also tossed the shot put 53 feet, 3 inches at the Allen. Those personal bests are Bangor school records.

Last week at the Colonial League meet, he hit 52-3.25 to set a meet record in the shot.

The Slaters junior already has a lot of gold hardware, but knows he'll have to do better to add to his collection.

When facing District 11's best Wednesday and Thursday at Whitehall's Zephyr Sports Complex, he'll be going against Class 3A competition after a regular season against mostly 2A Colonial League athletes.

"I'm working on the little things," he said. "Trying to hit positions. Having a hard work ethic. Trying to get better and better."

Pearson wants to throw the javelin 190 feet by season's end and the shot put 55 feet. Those marks don't guarantee gold medals, but they stand for progress.

"I do want to set those marks so next year I know how hard I have to work and what to work on," he added. "Right now, I'm working on form. Tinkering little things here and there."

Pearson, who won district gold in both events last season, is among a select few athletes who know dedication and a little luck could result in earning a state medal.

Stroudsburg's Langston Northern has established himself this season as District 11's fastest runner. He's won every individual race in the 100 and 200, including two memorable competitions in holding off Palmerton's Monty Szukics at the Allen Invitational earlier this season.

But Northern isn't motivated by individual accomplishments as much as he is with teammates JaVaughn Patterson, Keyautay Aulder and Altarique Mosley-Dew.

That foursome is the top seed in the 3A 400 relay. They are a brotherhood, according to Northern. They are cohesive, something that wasn't the case with last year's group that finished third at districts in 2011.

"I love these guys. They are like my family," Northern said. "We practice together. We have fun. Last year, we weren't having fun."

Northern didn't have a lot of fun at last year's District 11 event, finishing third in the 100 and sixth in the 200 after finishing first in the preliminaries with a state-qualifying time of 22.46.

This year, he expects to repeat his performances of 2012.

"I just want to do what I've been doing in the 100, 200 and 4 by 1, to win all three," the senior said.

Time will tell if Freedom's Julian Hill, the defending champion in the 100 and 200, or someone else can stop Northern.

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