Above: Ryan Pajak discussed his 15-Flat opener and the season ahead on August 31st.
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Ryan Pajak Announced his Verbal Commitment to the University of Notre Dame
Throughout his career, Ryan Pajak has been racing with some of Pennsylvania's greatest of all time. So maybe it's fitting that he'll join forces with Drew Griffith as part of the University of Notre Dame Class of 2028.
A rivalry has turned into a brotherhood for those two, or at least it will next year. But that's a storyline for the future. So, for now, let's talk about Ryan Pajak.
Never one to disappoint, Pajak has lived up to the hype as one of PA's most exciting distance runners. No matter the race, Pajak has a chance to win.
He has a knack for consistency and has used that to his advantage over the past year. As a result, he has collected numerous accolades and ribbons.
Pajak finished the 2022 Cross Country season with a District 7 Title, a State Runner-Up Finish, a Champs Northeast All-Region Finish, and a 12th-place finish at the Champs National Cross Country Championship. He earned First Team All-State honors for his incredible campaign.
Then during Indoor, he finished second at the PTFCA Indoor State Championship in the 3000m. He ran a blazing 8:27.99, and despite finishing second to Brian DiCola, he ran the state's fifth-fastest 3K of all time.
Above: Watch the incredible PTFCA 3K Championship race that saw Pajak run 8:27.
The outdoor season was no different for the Ringgold native. 1:54.5 in the 800m, 4:09.7 in the Mile, 8:48.2 in the 3200m... No matter the race, he threw down a fast time. He finished as the State Runner-Up in the 3200m and third in the 1600m at states before finishing ninth in the New Balance Nationals Mile.
His 8:48 3200m is in the record books as the fourth fastest time in Pennsylvania's illustrious history.
Next year, Pajak will join the Fighting Irish. The Notre Dame men finished 15th at the NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships last year and retained most of their squad. The team is poised to have another healthy year.
"I mainly chose the University of Notre Dame because the team culture was outstanding," said Pajak. "The coaches there have a plan for me to succeed in the future."
For now, Ryan Pajak has his senior year ahead of him, and it seems the sky's the limit.