GCC grad Bisignani finds success in swimming, track and field at Johns Hopkins
Greensburg Central Catholic graduate Mikayla Bisignani earned an impressive honor recently as a freshman on the Johns Hopkins women’s swimming team, but it was her success in another sport that turned heads.
Bisignani walked on the Blue Jay track and field team and went on to earn the Centennial Conference women’s outdoor discus title with a throw of 133 feet.
Her top throw, 42.63 meters, or about 139 feet, is second-best in school history.
Bisignani, who was recruited for swimming, was named to the NCAA Division III College Swimming and Diving Coaches Association of America Scholar All-America Team. The award is for athletes who competed at a NCAA, NAIA or NJCAA championship meet and had a GPA of 3.50 or higher.
Bisignani said she toyed with the idea of joining the track and field team when news and results starting coming out from the indoor season.
“I realize how much I missed it,” she said. “I felt I had some throws left in me, and I wasn’t ready to give it up.
“As soon as I picked up a disc, met the amazing team and coaching staff, I knew I had to be a part of it. Having not thrown for almost a year, I wasn’t really sure what to expect when the first meet rolled around.
“I definitely did not expect to throw new personal records.”
Bisignani, who is 6 foot, placed fifth in the discus at the 2017 WPIAL Class AA girls championship (111-03).
Johns Hopkins coach Bobby Van Allen said Bisignani has been an amazing addition.
“I didn’t know much about her until she first competed at our home meet and, wow, did she have a great start,” he said. “She has tremendous potential.
“I think she will be an All-American here for us in the future.”
Bisignani ranks sixth on the Baltimore school’s all-time list in the shot put with a mark of 14.12 meters, or about 39 feet.
Bisignani said she went through an accelerated technique program after an abbreviated preseason.
She said her strength training from swimming played a role in her success.
“Adding two practices a day was a lot at first,” said Bisignani, a biology and psychology student. “Many planners, calendars and (color-coded) agendas were necessary to stay on top of everything, but once I became accustomed to that schedule, I really enjoyed it and loved having something to do from the second I woke up -- often before 5:30 a.m. -- till the second I went to bed.”