EL’s Jones named Runner of the Year
BY SCOTT WALSH, Times-Shamrock Writer
Luke Jones wears a T-shirt all the time that says, “Tough times don’t last. Tough people do.”
“That’s just who he is,” Marc Weisgold, Elk Lake assistant cross country coach, said. “He’s a tough kid.”
Jones’ toughness was on display throughout the season. It was one of the things that enabled the junior to become the area’s top boys runner.
He headlines The Times-Tribune All-Region team as the Runner of the Year. The rest of the squad includes his Elk Lake senior teammate Will Bennett; Abington Heights senior Sean Burke; Valley View senior Aaron Wilkinson; and Holy Cross junior Rico Galassi.
Jones does not show much emotion, according to Elk Lake head coach Will Squier. He simply has a quiet intensity and relentless determination about him.
“If I was running as a competitor, he’d be one of the last guys I’d want to race against,” Squier said. “You are going to have to bring it all every time. Because if you don’t, he just hammers you. He doesn’t take an easy day off.
“When he’s a competitor, he’s like a predator. You could beat him 10 times and he’ll still come back at you.”
There wasn’t too many times when Jones was beaten, however.
During the Lackawanna League season, he won all seven meets by an average of 16.7 seconds. He also captured the Lackawanna County Commissioners Invitational, repeated as District 2 Class AA individual champion and placed second in Class AA at the PIAA Championships in Hershey.
“I was really happy with how I did this year,” Jones said. “I put a lot of work into it. And when you put a lot of work in, you usually have a good outcome.”