Quaker Valley boys cross country settles for 3rd at WPIAL meet
TribLIVE Sports Videos
For the first time since 2006, the Quaker Valley boys cross country team didn't strike gold at Cooper's Lake.
The six-time defending champions were dethroned by South Fayette last week at the WPIAL Class AA championship race in Slippery Rock. The Quakers (118 points) did qualify for states as they finished in third behind the Lions (74) and Uniontown (93).
“We weren't going to stop,” senior Rob Veltre said. “We were going to make states and we were sure as heck not going to stop on my watch.”
Quaker Valley was led by freshman Zach Skolnekovich, who finished second with a time of 16 minutes, 57 seconds. The freshmen has quickly become one of the Quakers' top runners.
“I have grown a lot from eighth grade,” Skolnekovich said. “The training is much better. My legs have gotten stronger. I personally have gotten stronger. I think states will be a good experience to run that race and see all that competition.”
Senior Luke Kropf finished in eighth with a time of 17:12. Other finishers for the Quakers included Veltre in 27th (17:48), junior Charlie Kristo in 31st (17:56), sophomore Fletcher Hubsch in 50th (18:34), junior Alex Comerci in 57th (18:41) and junior Mattias Cooper in 69th (19:05).
One of the biggest question marks will be if Xavier Lang will be able to compete at the PIAA meet Saturday. The junior has been battling an injury and has been one of the top contributors to the team.
“It did effect us (for the WPIAL race),” Veltre said. “He is a dedicated runner. We need him.”
The girls team, meanwhile, missed states as a team for the first time since 1997. The Quakers did have two individuals qualify for the meet, as sophomore Hannah Bablak finished in fifth (20:10) and senior Ashley McKendry finished 12th (20:38).
The duo said making the trip to Hershey together will benefit both because they workout together.
“I am a little disappointed,” McKendry said. “I wanted top 10 but I will take 12th. I am glad I get to go out with Hannah. I always say Hannah gets me to run fast, and I get Hannah to run.”
Both runners have experienced the Parkview Cross Country Course in Hershey and know the challenges the course offers.
“You have to started fast,” Bablak said. “The first mile you have to be in position. The next two miles is really hilly. And the last 800 meters is a really steep hill before you get to the finish line. It is a lot different than the WPIAL course.”
Other finishers for the girls team included senior Mary Grace Beson in 23rd (21:13), freshman Bearett Tarris in 38th (21:48), freshman Anna Pawloski in 58th (22:34), junior Caroline Westwood in 72nd (22:59) and senior Molly Wicker in 75th (23:11).
Nathan Smith is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter @NSmith_Trib.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Wintry weather in forecast for Mon-Yough area
- Race for Pennsylvania’s 39th Legislative District one to watch
- Fleury, Penguins too much for Kings
- 5 Cal U football players arrested for assault; Saturday’s game canceled
- Hackers’ new Dyre malware infects W.Pa. computers, vexes FBI cyber agents
- Twin Rivers COG takes another step toward finalizing merger with Steel Valley
- Veteran LB Harrison: Steelers must play to way defense is set up
- Steelers notebook: Fully healthy, rookie WR Bryant progressing fast
- Pirates likely to seek pitcher, catcher when free agency starts
- McKeesport basketball tournament to assist homeless veterans
- Police: Man wanted in fatal ambush of Pennsylvania trooper finally captured