Relay team earns district gold
Haley Yost has done a lot of things right during her career at Northwestern Lehigh. She has correctly prepared for races and made the right decisions on the track.
Last week, after the District 11 Track and Field Championships at East Stroudsburg South High School, the senior had a tough decision to make.
Yost had qualified for states in the 1600-meter run and as a member of the 4x800-meter relay team. Should she drop out of the 1600?
She seemed to have the immediate answer.
"If I have the choice, I'm going to just do the 4x800 relay," she said moments after receiving her silver medal from her 5:11.29 performance in the 1600-meter run. "It isn't up to me though. My coaches will have to allow me. Last year I tried to do the 1600- and 800-meter runs and I was just exhausted."
Her coaches, Dave Kerschner and Chris Stitzel, approved the decision and the senior plans to "pour her heart and soul" into the 4x800-meter relay as the squad and Trista Cunningham qualified for the PIAA meet on May 22 and 23 at Shippensburg University.
Yost also finished fourth in the 800-meter run with a time of 2:19.01.
Along with Yost, Sabrina Mertz, Sarah Segan and Rachele Cerrone, who are all members of the 4x800-meter relay, ran a 9:23.79, a new personal record for the foursome. They earned a gold medal as well.
Being able to achieve a personal best this late in the season is a good sign for the team.
"We didn't know what to expect of us coming in to this race," Cerrone said.
"It helps knowing that we had to push ourselves to do this," Segan added. "We are hoping for a great result at states."
Junior Lauren Anderson finished fourth in the 200-meter dash with a time of 26.79, but did not qualify for states.
Anderson's teammate on the hardwood this past winter, Cunningham, punched her ticket for the trip to Ship with a second-place finish in discus with a throw of 117-2, a new personal best for the senior.
Cunningham, who also finished fourth in shot put, will be making her first trip to states and is keeping her eye on a throw in the low 120s.
"The school record is my top goal," she said. "I don't know if I am good enough for placing at states, but the school record would be an amazing way for me to leave a mark on my school."