Wyoming Area’s Minichello, Berwick’s Montana Named The Citizens’ Voice Athletes Of The Year

June 25, 2018

WILKES-BARRE — Two high school standouts who rose above and beyond all District 2 competitors not just this year, but all-time, can call themselves the area’s best athletes.

Recent graduates Marc Anthony Minichello of Wyoming Area and Payden Montana of Berwick have been selected the male and female Athletes of the Year at The Citizens’ Voice’s inaugural Athlete of the Week ceremony this evening. The event was hosted at the F.M. Kirby Center and honored the CV’s Athletes of the Week and performers of the year in all sports from the Wyoming Valley Conference during the 2017-18 academic year.

Minichello and Montana — who were both recently selected as the paper’s track and field Performers of the Year — took home the top honors of the night after record-setting, state championship seasons in the field.

Minichello won the PIAA Class 3A boys javelin championship last month with a winning throw of 198 feet. At the District 2 championship meet, he broke the 16-year-old meet record in the event with a 204-foot-1 winner for his first district title.

Minichello, who will compete collegiately for the University of Pennsylvania’s track and field team, also played on the Warriors football team. The wide receiver brought in 43 receptions for 461 yards and five touchdowns.

Montana’s senior season didn’t just include PIAA titles — she went on to win at the national level, too.

The future Penn State thrower was named last week Gatorade’s Pennsylvania Girls Track & Field Player of the Year following her national championship in the shot put (49-foot-11.75 feet) at the New Balance Nationals Outdoor meet. She also took third in the nation in the discus (163-foot-8), just weeks removed from winning PIAA titles in both events.

At the state championships, Montana shattered a 38-year-old meet record in the Class 3A shot put with her 51-foot winner, then she won the discus at 154-foot-8 the following day.

She also rewrote the District 2 championships record books with title-winning efforts of 50-foot-4.25 in the shot put and 154-foot-8 in the discus.

Check Tuesday’s edition of The Citizens’ Voice for more coverage of the Athlete of the Week ceremony.

Contact the writer: eshultz@citizensvoice.com; 570-821-2054; @CVEricShultz