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Hopewell Track and Field

Vikings Chase Big Goals at PIAA Track and Field Championships

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The PIAA State Championship Track Meet kicks off Friday morning, and the Hopewell Vikings have their sights set on some pretty big goals.

Eight of the nine Hopewell qualifiers will compete on Day 1 in the preliminary rounds of the sprints and hurdles for a spot in Saturday’s finals and a PIAA medal.

Senior Tyler Lewis will be the first up on the track in the 100m hurdles. Tyler is in the second of four preliminary heats that will decide which 8 boys will race for the state championship in the final Saturday morning. The winner of each heat, and then the next four fastest times will qualify. Essentially, they are racing to earn a medal today, and then racing to figure out which medal tomorrow.

The prelims for both the girls and boys 4x100m relays will follow next. Maya Richburg, Emma Palmieri, Avery Boyd, and Nevaeh Persi-Jones are looking to break the 50 second barrier for the second season in a row. They ran a season best time of 50.28 last week at WPIAL, and they’re had some great practices this week.

The boys’ team of Josh Brunton, Zach Kovell, Tyler Lewis, and Nick dams have a school record in their sights. Their season best time of 44.01 is just .16 seconds off of the 43.85 record set just last year by Kovell, Lewis, and #ForeverVikings Matthew Essey and Cam Fedorka.

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The 400m follows the relays, and Emma Palmieri and Zach Kovell are both seeded in the top 8. Emma will run in heat 4. She ran a massive personal best time of 57.93 last week at WPIALs, which puts her in a strong position to qualify for the final and is also just .29 seconds away from Elise Farris’ school record of 57.64. She has history in her sights and is ready to seize it.

Kovell is seeded 7th overall in the 400m and also has a strong chance to qualify for the final and earn a medal. He has been working his tail off to break 50 seconds over the quarter mile, and he is excited and ready to achieve that goal on the biggest stage.

Palmieri and Kovell will also close out the day’s prelims in the heats of the 200m. In addition to making the final, Palmieri also has another school record within her reach. Lauryn Speicher’s record of 25.77, set just last year, is just .04 seconds away from Emma’s best. Kovell is also chasing a school record. He is .41 seconds away from Shawn Kimbrough’s 43-year-old record of 22.08- certainly a bigger gap to cover, but Kovell has been improving his time in big chunks all season, and sometimes crazy things happen at States!

Connor Progar will compete in the AA boys pole vault championship on Saturday at Noon. He’s looking forward to another chance to break his own school record of 13’7″ and earn his first State medal. The sky is literally the limit for him!

Follow @hopewell_TnF on Twitter/X for updates of Day1 #LevelUp

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