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One on One: Javelin phenom Skylar Ciccolini

Editor’s Note – Hometown Sports’ Kenny Varner recently contacted Former MIfflin County state champion javelin thrower and current University of Missouri phenom Skylar Ciccolini as we caught up with her transition from high school to college. Her athletic career and scholastics career. We also talked about how Covid-19 altered her first couple year’s of college.

HS: How has the transition from high school been for you?

SC: The transition from high school to college was much easier than I thought it would be. I have great teammates and a wonderful training group and that really made a big difference for me.


HS: How much has Covid-19 effect your first two years?

SC: Covid-19 changed a lot of things, and my college experience was no exception. My freshman year was cut short and I lost a track season because of it. Thankfully, this year I was able to attend classes somewhat normally and have a spring season, even though it looks different than usual. Covid delaying my first collegiate season was definitely tough, but I was very fortunate to be able to continue training at home while in quarantine, so I didn’t fall behind with my training plan. 


HS: What has been the biggest obstacle you had to face since coming to Missori.

SC: Since coming to Missouri, the biggest challenge has been staying healthy. I came to Mizzou with a  back injury and it has taken over two years to determine exactly what was causing the problem. Mizzou’s amazing sports medicine staff has worked with me to identify and rehabilitate my injury. This has allowed me to train at a higher level, longer so I have the ability to reach my goals in season. 


HS: How was your first year of track and field ? 

SC: So far, my track season has been very exciting. I couldn’t wait to compete again after being off for almost two years. Being able to compete at a high level with competitors that challenge me and push me to be better is a blessing that I don’t take for granted. I’m very excited to see what championship season has in store for the Mizzou javelin squad.


HS: Being shut down in the spring of last year due to the pandemic, what did you do when you weren’t able to compete?

SC: In the span of about four days, I went from being packed to go to my first collegiate track meet, to packing all of my belongings and going home to PA. I am extremely fortunate that I live with two incredible javelin coaches (my parents) and a great training partner (my sister). My teammate from Mizzou also came in and stayed with my family and I for most of quarantine because we have the ability to train in our backyard. I trained as I would have at school, because I wanted to be as ready as possible for my first meet back; whenever that would be.Besides training, since we couldn’t travel, I enjoyed being with my family, reading a lot of books and trying to keep busy around the house. 


HS: How great of a feeling was it when you were finally able compete?

SC: It was indescribable to be able to compete again. I have never gone that long without competing in some event or sport. I was so excited just to be able to see how training for 18 months could pay off and where I was technically in my throw. Having my mom at my first collegiate meet was also a really special moment. 


HS: Did you expect to have such a great season this early?

SC: I knew that my training had prepared to perform well this year, but timing is hard to determine. For me, I knew that I had the potential to throw pretty far this year, but I didn’t know for sure when it would come together. 


HS: Do you think having that down time helped you heal and get yourself in running shape more than you would during a normal year of competition?

SC: My training didn’t really change in quarantine. 


HS: What has been your best finish so far this season?

SC: My best mark so far this season 56.08m. 


HS: How many first places have you gotten? Top 5s?

SC: I have competed in three meets so far and I took fourth at one, and first in the two others.


HS: On the educational side, how has the transition been there as well?

SC: I am in love with my classes. It was different only having one or two classes a day, but most of my classes are really enjoyable. It is a little challenging balancing school work and training, but after the first semester, it got easier. 


HS: Have you decided on a major yet?

SC: I am majoring in Natural resource science and management with an emphasis in Fisheries and wildlife biology


HS: What has been your favorite classes?

SC: Principles of wildlife management

HS: What are your plans for the future athletically and scholastically?

SC: Scholastically, I am going to pursue a master degree in wildlife biology and athletically, I want to progress to a point, where I can be a professional thrower for the US team.

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