Sewickley Academy grad Summer Thorpe to use NCAA meet experience as ‘springboard’
Sewickley Academy graduate and Notre Dame junior track and field athlete Summer Thorpe was overawed at her first NCAA Division I outdoor championship meet June 5-8 at Texas.
Thorpe (13.51 seconds) placed 22nd in the women’s 100-meter hurdles and ninth in her heat. Notre Dame tied for 30th in the team standings.
“I was excited and thankful to be there,” said Thorpe, who turned 21 on June 20 and is a resident of Pittsburgh’s North Side. “I was starstruck by all my peers.
“They’re all so awesome.”
Thorpe (13.30) was seeded 23rd in the preliminaries and qualified at the East Preliminary Championship.
Thorpe, the 2016 WPIAL and PIAA Class AA champion in the 100 hurdles, overcame hamstring pain.
She has returned home to train and does not plan to compete this summer.
She said she is slowly getting better.
“I learned about my strength,” said Thorpe, who is studying economics. “I could push myself.”
She said the NCAA championship took her back to summer track of her youth and gave her a foundation for next season.
Notre Dame coach Matt Sparks said he was proud of the way Thorpe represented the Irish.
“We have no doubt she will use this experience as a springboard to make a bigger impact on the national scene during her senior year,” Sparks said.
Karen Kadilak is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.