- 2A Girls Race Highlights
Marlee Starliper of Northern put on a show in the AA race, closing very hard to shatter the course and meet record in a dominant individual display. The South Fayette girls used its great depth to run to the team title in a close one over Northern.
Northern's Marlee Starliper dazzled with a terrific performance in her final state meet. She rolled to her third straight AA state title, running 17:10.9 on a wet, muddy, and somewhat frosty Hershey Parkview course.
The senior hung with a pack of leaders for about the first mile before really taking off and extending her lead in the second mile. She closed very hard, running an impressive final mile to take home XC state crown No. 3. That time breaks her own course record (set originally at Foundation) by 30 seconds and is also the fastest 5K girls time in PIAA State Championship history.
Taryn Parks of Greencastle-Antrim also had a strong run in her final XC state meet. Parks, a senior, went 18:06, her second straight runner-up finish and fourth straight top three finish at the state meet. She will look to make it four Foot Locker Nationals trips in a row later this month.
Brownsville Area's Gionna Quarzo took third in 18:18, while Blue Mountain's Olivia Haas was fourth in 18:23, a pair of great races from those two. North Schuylkill's Cori McCormick (fifth in 18:44), Fairview's Maddison Hayes (sixth in 18:50) and Sharon's Gianna Labbiento (seventh in 18:52) all went sub-19 on Saturday.
It figured to be a battle between South Fayette and Northern and that's exactly what it was on Saturday. The South Fayette Lions pulled out the AA team title with 62 points -- a strong display of depth -- as Northern took second with 77.
Lauren Iagnemma paced SF with a 13th place finish in 19:21. Freshman Angelina Gabriel improved all season long and proved to be a crucial piece, grabbing a 24th place medal in 20:04, well over a minute time improvement over her Foundation race at Hershey. Hailey Poe and Steffanie Kozak placed 36th and 37th, respectively, for the Lions, while Emma Fleck was 57th to round out the scorers.
SF getting four in before Northern's three that provided a strong boost for the Lions.
Northern got on the podium with its second place finish. Starliper provided the one-stick up front, and Katie Anthony also got on the medal stand with a 17th place finish in 19:40.
Warrior Run placed third with 116 points. Lauren Trapani was ninth in 19:16 to lead the way for WR, which all seven girls next season. Central Cambria, which also brings back its full squad next year, was fourth with 159, another strong states showing for the 2018 AA champions. Lewisburg Area had the best spread -- 58 seconds -- to take fifth with 182 points.