Devlin speeds to state title
Aislinn Devlin improved on her previous finish in the PIAA Class AAA race at Hershey Saturday.
It may have been only a oneplace improvement, but it was the biggest step up possible.
The Downingtown West senior capped her scholastic crosscountry career by winning a state championship. A second-place finisher last year, Devlin (17:44) crossed the finish line two seconds ahead of North Allegheny’s Clara Savchik, completing a nearperfect 2016 campaign that culminated with her winning the Ches-Mont League and District 1-AAAA races.
“I came in here with goals,” Devlin said. “I’m pretty excited about this.”
Taking the lead with 1,000 meters in, Devlin was challenged Sav-
lenged Savchik as they approached the final stretch of the Parkview Course. But she got back in front with about 150 meters to go, her kick sewing up the big win.
Unionville’s Anna Juul (18:11) finished a distant third, with North Penn’s Ariana Gardizy (18:47) ninth. Conestoga’s Dominique Shultz (18th, 19:00), North Penn’s Olivia Dyer (22nd, 19:13) and Unionville’s Madison McGovern (23rd) 19:13) were other 3A medalists.
Annie Glodek finished her scholastic cross-country career in fine fashion Saturday.
At the same time, the Perkiomen Valley star helped her program cap an equally-productive season with a run that could continue at a fast pace even after she’s gone.
Glodek claimed fifth place in the Class AAA race race at the PIAA State Championships. She emerged as the Pioneer Athletic Conference’s lone medal winner in the event, covering the Parkview Course in a time of 18:32 to improve on last year’s 10th-place showing in the state meet.
“It’s good. It’s kind of what I wanted,” she said.
Glodek also factored prominently in PV’s thirdplace team finish. Though it didn’t meet the expectation, the showing nonetheless proved to be an alltime best for the program. Boys Class AAA Connor McMenamin literally wanted to cover lost ground.
He did it in a big way Saturday.
The Souderton senior scored a sixth-place finish in the PIAA Class AAA race at Hershey, covering the Parkview Course in 16 minutes to barely become the highest-finishing Suburban one League runner in that event. It turned out be a marked improvement over his previous state-level runs.
“My sophomore year, I was 31st,” McMenamin recalled. “My junior year, I was running in the Top 10, but over the last 100 meters I fell and finished 41st.”
There was no stumbles for him this time around. Running fifth after the first mile, McMenamin ran in a pack behind race leaders Noah Affolder of Carlisle (15:33), Nathan Henderson of J.P. McCaskey (15:48) and Sam Affolder of Carlisle (15:50).
Ephrata’s Zach Lefever and Butler’s Noah Beveridge (both 15:59) had the edge on him at the finish. But McMenamin had an equally-close edge on Council Rock North’s Ryan Campbell (16:01), who followed him in seventh place.
“There wasn’t a whole lot of movement,” he said. “It was a pack of me and five others. Toward the end, we got spread out.”
Henderson’s Spencer Smucker was 12th in a time of 16:17, and Downingtown West’s Jake O’Neill finished 17th in 16:24. Council Rock North had other high placers in Bryan Keller (23rd, 16:28), Sam Early (25th, 16:30) and Tim Haas (26th, 16:30).
McMenamin’s Souderton teammate, Joe Breen, placed 99th. North Penn’s Brendan O’Toole (155th) and Colin Grace (194th) were other individual runners in the 214-contestant Class AAA field.
Council Rock North was the big-school team champion with 76 points. Downingtown West was third in the AAA standings (158 points), with West Chester Henderson eighth (247) and Central Bucks West ninth (249).
Downingtown West’s Aislinn Devlin betterd her state cross county finish from 2015, by winning this year’s girls Class AAA meet in Hershey on Saturday.