District 2 — in particular, the Lackawanna League — is poised for another solid showing at the PIAA Cross Country Championships in Hershey on Saturday.
Montrose boys and Elk Lake girls are contenders to capture the team championship in Class 1A. Some are considering Honesdale girls are darkhorse in Class 2A. Dallas boys are defending state champions in Class 2A and have the depth to repeat.
Individually, Forest City senior Jen Korty is considered one of the favorites to take top honors in Class 1A. Ditto North Pocono senior David Haines in Class 2A boys. After earning a state medal in Class 2A last year, junior Katie Dammer will look to challenge for one in the tough Class 3A this year since Abington Heights moved up via PIAA reclassification.
It starts at 9:30 a.m. with the Class A girls race on the Hershey Parkview course. Weather forecast is sunny with a high of 59 degrees, winds WNW at 5-10 mph and just a 10-percent chance of precipitation.
Here’s a link to the course map, courtesy of the PIAA website:
Here is a capsule look at the six competing classes:
CLASS 1A GIRLS
Start: 9:30 a.m.
Last year’s champions: District 6 St. Joseph’s Catholic (team); Marianne Abdalah, District 7 Vincentian Academy (individual)
Top returning finisher: Abdalah
District 2 qualifiers: Elk Lake (Justine Johns, Keri Jones, Sadie Bosscher, Shayanne Bennett, Lydia Ofalt, Lexi Hemenway, Maddie Tewksbury, Andrea Rockerfeller);
Around the state: Abdalah is seeking her fourth straight PIAA title. She won the District 7 crown in 19:23. … Emma Seifried from Country Day School of the Sacred Heart, who was second last year at states behind Abdalah, won her third straight District 1 title in 19:04. … Defending state team champ St. Joseph’s Catholic won the District 6 title, 37-38, over Marion Center. Sophomore Sera Mazza, who was fourth last year at states, led the way with a winning time of 19:18.9. Senior Taya Whitfield paced Marion Center, finishing third in 19:35.20. Whitfield was 17th last year at states. … Christian School of York senior Nicole Shelton won the District 3 title in 19:13. She was 22nd last year at states. York Catholic junior Katelyn MacDougall was second in District 3 in 19:20 and Columbia junior Jordan Haberstrom was third in 19:29. Haberstrom took fifth last year at states. … Marian Catholic junior Tina Capparell won the District 11 title in 19:13.33. She placed 18th last year at states. … Fairview senior Lilly Myers won the District 10 title in 19:38. … Elk Lake’s Justine Johns is a three-time state medalist, finishing 20th in 2013, 17th in 2014 and 19th in 2015. … Elk Lake could challenge St. Joseph’s Catholic for the team title as well as Vincentian Academy, which won District 7 with 50 points.
CLASS 2A GIRLS
Start: 10:15 a.m.
Last year’s champions: District 10 Villa Maria (team); Ally Rome, District 2 Dallas (individual)
Top returning finisher: Kayla Connelly, Lansdale Catholic (third)
District 2 qualifiers: Honesdale (Mackenzie LaMorte, Tedra Harrison, Dana Pratt, Isabella Frigoletto, Kiara Mayers, Faith Howell, Rachel Olver,
Around the state: Connelly, a senior, won her fourth straight District 12 title in 18:58.80. … Villa Maria is seeking its third straight team title. It is led by junior Grace Brown, who finished second at the District 10 meet in 19:50 and placed 13th at states last year. Franklin senior Savanna Carr won the District 10 title in 19:39. Carr was 23rd at states last year. … Quaker Valley won the District 7 title with 53 points. Senior Anna Pawloski led the way, winning District 7 individual honors in 19:34. Junior Lucie Kubinski, who was sixth last year at states, finished fourth in District 7 in 20:11. … Villa Joseph Marie won the District 1 team title with 31 points. Sophomore Katie Irelan won the District 1 individual title in 19:18. Irelan was ninth last year at states. … Senior Michelle Bauer (19:39.0) and junior Amanda Foster (19:55.9) of Saint Marys Area finished 1-2 in the District 9 meet. Foster was 10th at states last year. … Perennial Class 1A power Central Cambria is in Class 2A this year. It won the District 6 title with 37 points, led by senior Sydney Gilkey’s fifth-place finish in 20:00.70. Gilkey was 12th in last year’s Class 1A state race. … Danville won the District 4 team title with 54 points as sophomore Elaina Klinger placed second in 19:25. Danville was second in the state team standings last year.
CLASS 3A GIRLS
Start: 11 a.m.
Last year’s champions: District 1 Pennsbury (team); Olivia Sargent, District 1 Pennsbury (individual)
Top returning finisher: Aislinn Devlin, Downingtown West (second)
District 2 qualifiers: Abington Heights (Katie Dammer, Alex Scheuermann, Sarah Bath, Emma Marion, Bianca Calvo, Annie Wesolowski, Allison Kane,
Around the state: Devlin, a senior, won the District 1 title in 17:12. Unionville senior Anna Juul, who was third at states last year, was second in District 1 in 17:40. … Cocalico junior Jamie Zamrin won the District 3 title in 18:15. Wilson senior Alison Willingmyre was third in District 3 in 18:35. Willingmyre was fifth at states last year. … Cardinal O’Hara senior Olivia Arizin won the District 12 title in 18:51.30. Arizin was eighth at states last year. … Perkiomen Valley won the District 1 team title with 159 points, led by senior Annie Glodek’s third-place finish in 17:55. Glodek was 10th at states last year. … Oakland Catholic won the District 7 team title with 39 points. Senior Lauren Finikiotis led the way, finishing second in 19:08. Finikiotis was 11th at states last year. … North Allegheny junior Clara Savchik won the District 7 title in 18:00. She placed 16th at states last year. … Abington Heights’ Katie Dammer, the District 2 champion, finished seventh last year at states in Class 2A.
CLASS 1A BOYS
Start: 11:45 a.m.
Last year’s champions: District 3 Camp Hill (team); Griffin Mackey, District 7 Sewickley Academy (individual)
Top returning finisher: Mackey
Around the state: Winchester Thurston used a 1-2-3 finish from senior Ben Littman (16:45), junior Tristan Forsythe (17:10) and senior Shaun Hay (17:11) to win the District 7 team title with 20 points. Forsythe was 17th at states last year and Littman was 18th. … Camp Hill won the District 3 team title with 35 points. Senior Ian Gabig led the way, finishing third in 16:46. Last year, Gabig just missed a state medal, placing 26th. … Seniors Casey Ellis (16:59) and Garret Smith (17:20) finished 1-2 at the District 4 championships to help Northeast Bradford win the team title with 28 points. … Mercyhurst Prep senior Noah Curtin, who was second at states last year, finished fifth at the District 10 meet in 17:32. … Seneca senior brothers Phoenix and Donovan Myers were second (17:05) and third (17:14), respectively, at the District 10 meet. Donovan Myers was ninth at states last year. … Cambridge Springs senior Connor Walsh, who was fourth at states last year, won the District 10 title in 16:39.
CLASS 2A BOYS
Start: 12:30 p.m.
Last year’s champions: District 2 Dallas (team); Dominic Hockenbury, District 2 Lake-Lehman (individual)
Top returning finisher: Zack Skolnekovich, Quaker Valley (second)
District 2 qualifiers: Dallas (Jack Zardecki, Mitchell Rome, Adam Borton, Jason Culp, Steven Postupak, Josh Jarden, Josh Wyandt, Corey Osborn);
Around the state: Skolnekovich, a senior, won the District 7 individual title in 16:15. … Greensburg Salem won the District 7 team title with 67 points. Sophomore Mark Brown led the way with a fourth-place finish in 16:55. … Waynesburg Central senior Ben Bumgarner was second in the District 7 meet in 16:18. He was seventh last year at states. … South Fayette senior Aaron Pfeil was third in District 7 in 16:49 and junior teammate Sam Snodgrass was fifth in 17:00. Pfeil placed eighth at states last year and Snodgrass was 12th. … Placing its first five runners in the top 19, York Suburban won the District 3 title with 48 points. Junior Bryce Ohl (16:40) and sophomore Jarrett Raudensky (16:40) led the way, finishing second and third respectively. … Loyalsock Twp. junior Quinn Serfass won the District 4 title in 16:50. … Holy Ghost Prep senior Callahan Lennon won the District 1 title in 16:18. Lennon was 24th at states last year. … Dallas will try to use its depth to repeat as state team champion. The Mountaineers placed six runners in the top 16 at the District 2 meet, led by Jack Zardecki’s second-place finish. Zardecki was 25th at states last year. … District 2 champion David Haines of North Pocono is one of the top contenders for individual honors. He was 23rd at states last year.
CLASS 3A BOYS
Start: 1:15 p.m.
Last year’s champions: District 1 Downingtown West (team); Jake Brophy, District 1 Central Bucks East (individual)
Top returning finisher: Nathan Henderson, J.P. McCaskey (fifth)
District 2 qualifiers: Abington Heights (Kyle Burke, Dan Uhranowsky, Ethan Mattox, Ryan Siebecker, Nathan Kizer, Thomas Kerrigan, Adam Traweek,
Around the state: Henderson, a senior, finished second in the District 3 meet in 15:33. … Carlisle senior Noah Affolder won the District 3 title in 15:17 and his brother Sam, a sophomore, was fourth in 15:47. The Affolders moved to Carlisle from New York when their father, who is in the military was transferred. Noah Affolder won the Foot Locker Northeast Regional last November. Carlisle won the District 3 team title with 105 points. … Neshaminy junior Rusty Kujdych won the District 1 title in 15:20. He was 19th at states last year. … West Chester Henderson junior Spencer Smucker was fourth at the District 1 meet in 15:37. He placed 15th at states last year. … Junior Ryan Campbell was third in 15:33, helping Council Rock North win the District 1 team title with 53 points. … LaSalle College won the District 12 team title behind the 1-2 finish of junior Evan Addison (16:34.60) and senior Stephen Paul (16:42.0). … Seneca Valley slipped past North Allegheny, 55-62, to capture the District 7 team title. Franklin Regional senior Mark Provento won the District 7 individual title in 16:18. He was 20th at states last year.
— SCOTT WALSH