CONNELLSVILLE — The Uniontown girls secured the inside track to the Section 2-AAA title Tuesday afternoon with wins over McKeesport and West Mifflin.
The Lady Raiders edged McKeesport, 28-29, and shut out the Lady Titans, 15-50.
Leading the way for Uniontown was freshman Hope Trimmer. Trimmer held off the Lady Tigers’ Macayle Wade to finish first by 15 seconds with a time of 21:23.
“It’s the same junior high course, but doubled,” Trimmer said of her course knowledge.
The temperature was near 90 and the skies were clear and sunny for the opening meet.
“I was looking forward to the downhill and the shady parts of the course. It was super hot,” said Trimmer.
Trimmer didn’t set her sights too high for the section opener.
“I was expecting third, at least. I was comfortable on the first loop. The second loop, not so much,” said Trimmer, adding, “This is one of my better races. It deals feel great (to win her first high school section meet).”
The race for first developed after Trimmer crossed the finish line. The Lady Tigers’ Macayle Wade was second, with her sister Makaila third in 22:21.
The Lady Raiders’ Karsyn Lucy was fourth in 23:30. Ryleigh Kelley finished ahead of McKeesport’s Cami Noll, and then Josephine Maher, Caitlin Michelangelo and Madelyn Debord finished in order to secure the victory.
While Uniontown and McKeesport battled, the Connellsville girls picked up a split with a 15-50 win over West Mifflin and a 25-32 loss to McKeesport.
The Lady Falcons had three finishers in the top 10, led by Lillian Herbert in seventh place with a time of 24:01. Callie Cunningham crossed the finish line seven seconds later, and Chloe Kalp eight seconds after that.
Though the Fayette County teams won’t run one another until the section finale in two weeks, Herbert said she learned about the competition from the race.
“We did not know about (Hope Trimmer). She’s very good,” said Herbert. “I was actually focusing on times from Saturday (at the Red, White & Blue Invitational).”
As for her race, Herbert said, “I got in front of Callie and got my pace. I settled in in the second mile. I saw the marker and kept my pace. I wanted to go hard on the second mile. That’s where everyone else dies out.”
Herbert was pleased with her effort, adding with a smile, “It was a PR for me. It went a lot better than I thought.”