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Hopewell Track and Field

Thrilling Finish Secures Victory for Hopewell Girls Track and Field Team Over Freedom



The Hopewell Girls Track and Field team entered Thursday’s meet against Freedom with their 6+ year section win streak on the line. The Vikings girls’ program had not lost a section meet since 2017, but they were facing a Freedom team this is strong and deep in the field events and could also negate some of Hopewell’s strengths in the springs and hurdles.

The distance crew stepped up to the challenge and carried the team on the track. Vicki Dong, Christy and Caylee Sundy, Keira Mann, Avery Elias, Lacie Slavinsky, and Madi Inderelst all ran multiple events and captured 27 of the 32 points available in the 4×800, 1600M, 800M, and 3200 races. Madi Inderelst also won the 400m against Freedom and ran a leg on the decisive 4x400m relay. The 4×800 replay team opened the meet with a win for 5 points. Vicki Dong and Christy Sundy went 1 and 2 in the 1600m for 8 points, Caylee Sundy and Keira Mann went 1 and 3 in the 800m for 6 points, and Vicki and Christy repeated in the 3200M, taking 1st and 2nd again for another 8 points. McKenna Ladson also took 3rd in the 400M.

With Freedom dominating in the field events, the meet came down to the last event on the track – the 4×400 relay. Hopewell led in points 73.5-71.5 at the time, so the winner of the last event would win the meet, and possibly the section championship. With the whole team cheering from the infield, Maya Richburg led off and gave the Vikings a healthy lead, that Madi Inderelst extended. Ella Morelli ran a strong third leg, and handed off to Emma Palmieri, who slammed the door shut on any dramatic comeback attempts. The win secured 78.5-71.5 victory and kept the girls’ undefeated section streak alive.

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Mother Nature played along for the first time this spring, and the beautiful weather allowed a lot of girls to put up season best and lifetime best performances. Freshman Marlee Page added 10 feet to her javelin PR, throwing 90′ and taking second overall. Sarah Casey was third overall with her PR of 27’7″ in the shot put. Emma Palmieri (12.90), Nevaeh Persi-Jones (13.39), and Holly Biesenkamp (14.08) had lifetime bests in the 100M. Kira Shakespeare won the 100M hurdles with a new PR of 17.54, and Avery Boyd was third with her PR 19.37. Reese Muray ran a season best 53.65 seconds in the 300M hurdles despite feeling ill and got a gutsy win in the event. Maya Richburg also had season best times in the 100m (13.39) and 200m (28.19).

The girls are back in action at the City of Hermitage Invitational at Hickory High School this Saturday, and then wrap up the section season with a home meet on Monday April 22 against New Brighton and Western Beaver.

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