Girls Preview - PIAA District 4 Championships
- State Qualifying Spots For Teams: 1
D4-A traded one star for a different star before the start of the season. Loyalsock's Isabel Sagar, who won the D4-AA individual title last season, moved to 1A this season, while last year's D4-A champ Lauren Trapani goes to 2A.
Sagar has been incredible this season, starting in early September, when the senior went 17:31 at Lock Haven. Since then, she won at PSU, took second at Paul Short, and ran away with the de facto PHAC title. Likely nothing will stand in the way of Sagar, perhaps just the clock -- expect a very quick time here.
As for the team title, it looks like it'll be a battle between Loyalsock and Troy for the district title and lone states spot.. Last year, Troy took second to Warrior Run (now in AA) and Loyalsock was third in AA. The teams met once this season with Loyalsock beating Troy 174-205 at Lock Haven. Troy is coming off a dominating NTL win, while Loyalsock was fourth in the PHAC. Expect a close one here.
- State Qualifying Spots For Teams: 2
One of the best intra-district team battles will come at Bloomsburg on Thursday in the AA race. Danville Area is on the hunt for its historic tenth straight district title, but Warrior Run will present quite the test for the Ironmen.
Danville Area scored 36 points to win D4-AA a year ago before taking home the state AA state title a week later in Hershey. That team has six varsity returners and a wealth of talent this season. Warrior Run moved from 1A to 2A for this season, and the young squad (which won the D4-1A title handily last year) could steal the show.
The teams met once this year at the NEPA Invitational on the D4 course at Bloom with Warrior Run taking a 73-96 win. A lot can change in a month and the race for the title will be heated. Luckily for these two teams (and not so much for any others in D4-AA), there are two states spots up for grabs. Lewisburg Area, Selinsgrove, and Shikellamy will look for a big day to challenge the favorites.
Individually, the odds-on favorite is Warrior Run's Lauren Trapani, the D4-A champion from a year ago. Now in AA, Trapani is still the one to beat. She has raced in invites just twice this season -- both runner-up finishes at LHU and NEPA. She'll be hungry for that first win on Thursday.
After that, it will get interesting with all-important team points up for the taking. Danville has a terrific top three in Elaina Klinger, Marisa Maffei, and Emma Mikita. For Warrior Run, Emma Miller and Cameron Trapani should be in line for high finishes. Shikellamy's Nicole Keeley is coming off a strong second place finish at her home invite ahead of the Danville girls. NTL champ Jules Jones of Cowanesque Valley, Selinsgrove's Mikayla Carnathan and Lewisburg's Hannah Mirshahi, Delaney Humphrey, and Lauren Michaels are among the other girls to watch for in this field.