Emmaus girls harriers end stellar season at state meet
It ended on a mid-autumn Saturday afternoon in a town made famous for chocolate. It ended after a superb regular season and a district title and only after some life lessons had been learned.
The Emmaus girls cross country team concluded a successful season with a 12th-place finish in a field of 19 schools at the PIAA Class 3A girls race last Saturday in Hershey. The Green Hornets accumulated 263 points in the race, with an average time of 20:29.
Throughout the season, Hornet head coach Kelly Bracetty stressed teamwork in a sport many outsiders may consider to be a solo pursuit.
“My teammates are such a big deal to me,” said Emmaus’ Keerstin Augustin.
Leading the way for Emmaus and finishing 22nd overall was Hailey Reinhard in 19:48.
“I thought I did great and I thought the whole team did great,” Reinhard said. “It’s really hilly, but I think we did great.”
Augustin took 33rd overall in 20:05, while Bella Lees ran a strong race to finish four seconds behind her teammate, good for 38th overall. The trio ran well and often ran together throughout the season in a pack.
“I’m so thankful to have just three people within 15 seconds of me,” Augustin said. “No matter what happens, there is always one of us that is doing really well. So it’s great to have other teammates who are dependable and you can rely on.”
The Hershey course proved much different than the previous week’s race in District 11 competition at DeSales University.
“This course, the terrain, is so much more challenging,” said Augustin. “There was mud everywhere. Here you really had to be mindful where you stepped.
Kera Reinhard was next for the Green Hornet contigent (21:01) and 79th overall. Kaia Berrio (21:22), Ashley Ryan (21:56) and Ashleigh McNellis (21:59) rounded out the roster.
“We always have the last four teammates that even though they are not right up with us, they always do amazing,” Augustin said. “They help us out mentally and in the race with points.”
On the boys side, Keshav Shankar finished 142nd overall in 17:28.7.