Casey Burton Ready To Take Care Of Unfinished Business

To the casual observer/results scanner, Casey Burton's runner-up finish in the PIAA Class AAA long jump final in 2019 was another solid finish for the North Allegheny sprinter and jumper.

For the now senior, that silver-medal winning leap of 19 feet, 4.5 inches was - and could have been - so much more.

Having persevered through a junior year slowed by not one but two hamstring injuries, the Princeton University signee is looking to tie together all of the loose ends that left 2019 as unfinished business.

"Casey has always been all in concerning track and everything she does, and so it was very difficult for her to be dealt a blow like those injuries," NA coach John Neff said of his senior standout, who was edged out at Shippensburg in the long jump last May by just 1 inch. "Of course, Casey, like anyone, wanted to be back as soon as possible, and it was a tough test of patience to have to wait out the recovery process.  Now, she is at full strength and ready for a stellar senior season."

Burton has picked up a pair of long jump victories, two 60-meter dash wins and a first in the 200 at the first two TSTCA indoor meets at Edinboro University. Thus far, she is Nos. 4, 8 and 14, respectively, in those events in Pennsylvania.

Burton's junior year was greatly affected by her hamstring injuries - the first suffered during a practice during the indoor season, while the second came during a dual meet outdoors. The hamstring woes limited Burton's indoor campaign to just three TSTCA meets and kept her out of the state finale at Penn State, while she was recovered enough outdoors to compete at 100 percent in only the Pine-Richland Invitational prior to the WPIAL and PIAA meets.

"Casey is our school record holder in both the 100 and 200, and the long jump," Neff said. "She is a true leader and someone who cares deeply about the team, her teammates and everyone around her. Casey was always the first one to want to do what is best for the team, from trying new events, to competing hard the day of meets."

In looking ahead to the 2020 season, Burton is hoping to re-establish her school record in the long jump, adding at least 6 inches to her 19-6 effort from 2018 and putting an 11.-second clocking next to her name for the 100.

"Yes, for sure," Burton said when asked if breaking 20 feet in the LJ and 12.00 in the dash are her 2020 goals. "They are of equal importance, although a 20-foot-plus long jump would be very satisfying for me, as I have had less practice in that event and improving my technique for the event has been a challenge."

Burton is scheduled to be back in action today in TSTCA Meet #4 inside Edinboro's Zafirovski Dome in her three indoor specialties.