PUNXSUTAWNEY — With near perfect weather to run, the Punxsy girls' cross country team took advantage and recorded 10 seasonal or career bests on the day to defeat both Elk County and Saint Marys on their home course yesterday afternoon.
Elk County fell 25-30 to the Punxsy harriers, despite taking the top two places in the meet with the home team taking the next five places to earn the victory. Against Saint Marys, the Punxsy girls took places two through six on their way to a 20-40 victory. DuBois Central also competed but did not field a full team.
Saint Marys’ state champion runner Adair Gennocro finished first overall in the meet, running an excellent course-record time of 19:21, 11 seconds better than her previous record set in 2010.
Elk County’s duo of Kennedy Weisner and Victoria Dippold claimed the next two spots, both running solid times under 20 minutes.
“Gennocro and Weisner are multiple state medalists in both cross country and track, and they both looked in control and highly efficient today,” said Punxsy girls coach George Wehrle.
Juliann Boddorf continued her strong running as she scored another career best in finishing fourth overall with a time of 20:24, her best by nearly a minute.
"Juliann is just on a roll right now, and with her combination of strength and speed there’s no telling how fast she can run. She is running faster every race.”
Alexis Young was not far behind Boddorf as she clocked in at 21:23.
“That time is still pretty quick for our course, but I know Alexis is capable of running much faster.
"She always does her best racing in the second half of the season, so I look forward to seeing that,” said Wehrle.
Sophomore Ala Small ran her best race of the season, improving her seasonal best by 44 seconds.
“We really needed Ala to get up and run closer to Juliann and Alexis, and today she did just that for the first time this year. She had a great race,” explained the Lady Chucks coach.
Korinne Young and Kaston Mohney were the next runners to finish, placing seventh and eighth overall, just ahead of two Elk County runners.
“Korinne and Kaston both had huge improvements today, and for them to run times near 22 minutes on our course is just outstanding. I know we’ve never had a better 1-5 finish on our course than we had today,” Wehrle said.
Marissa Greenblatt scored a career best time of 23:19, placing 11th overall.
“Marissa ran her fastest time on our course by over 90 seconds, and looked strong in the process. I look for her to do even better in the near future.”
Logan Brooks was impressive as well, running her best time ever at 23:46 to place 13th.
“Logan has been steadily improving since our first meet, and with that time today she really took a big jump in the right direction. Our 1-7 time gap was 3:22, easily our best of the season," Wehrle said.
Kayla Carpenter notched a seasonal best with a time of 25:43, as did Elissa Hill just two seconds behind.
“Kayla was a couple minutes faster than her previous best time and is now closer to where she should be, and Elissa continues to chip away at her times and ran under 26 for the first time this season,” detailed Wehrle.
Freshman Kara Kunselman placed 21st overall with a time of 26:20, her fastest of the season by a minute.
Carolyn Barnett was close behind in 26:35, slicing 50 seconds off her previous best.
“Beth and Kara are really starting to race well, and I see no reason why they shouldn’t continue to improve. They are looking better and better each competition,” said the home coach.
Tamera Anthony placed 27th overall in 28:34, just barely off her seasonal best.
“Tamera would normally have been about a minute faster, but even so she was close to her best time of the season. Her best running is still to come,” wrapped up Wehrle.
Punxsy is back in action on Saturday morning at the Crimson Hawk Invitational, hosted by IUP.