Harriton sophomore Max Norris qualified for this weekend's PIAA state track championship in the 1,600-meter run with a 4:19 time Friday at the District 1 championships in Coatesville.
The time was this year's lowest for a Pennsylvania sophomore.
“I had to make a move at 600 meters that got me into states," Norris said. "I Google the other runners and pretty much know everybody I am running against, their tendencies and habits. It’s funny, my teammates call me the Wounded Deer, because I usually hang back like I’m wounded until the last 400 when I use my kick to get it done.”
Norris won’t have to do much more research on the young men standing between himself and a gold medal, as seven of the top nine seeding times heading into states came from the District 1 final, Norris’ finals heat at District 1 where he finished seventh.
“With the group of runners here today and at states next week, you can’t hang back,” added Norris. “If you hang back too far, they will leave you in the dust. We got out fast today, which really kicked up the time. I think I have the new best sophomore time, which I am very happy with.”
Lower Merion junior Eliana Yankelev will also compete in the state meet at Shippensburg University’s Seth Grove Stadium.
Yankelev cleared 5 feet, 3 inches on her second high jump Thursday afternoon to qualify for states in the high jump at the District 1 meet at Coatesville. She also qualified in the 100-meter hurdles with a 14.64 time that earned her the No. 3 seed at Shippensburg.
“I am definitely glad to make states,” said Yankelev, whose personal high-jump record is 5 feet, 4 inches. “I kept coming out of my curl too soon, which made me hit my butt on the bar. If I come out of it too quickly it always happens. I have to focus on staying in it longer.”
As for the hurdles, Yankelev said, “I was very happy with my time (Thursday). (Friday) it was raining all morning which makes it tougher, but I am very happy about making states."
The PIAA Pennsylvania State Championship meet starts at 9 a.m. Friday, with finals for most events on Saturday.
Yankelev's high-jump event starts at 9 a.m. Friday, then the 100-meter hurdles go off at 10:30 a.m. Norris' 1,600-meter run is set to go off at or about noon Friday.
DISTRICT 1 TRACK CHAMPIONSHIPS
(state-qualifying performances in bold)Name/school Event Result Lower Merion girls 4x800 relay preliminary 9:42.23 Eliana Yankelev, LMHS girls 100-meter hurdles preliminary 14.87 girls 100-meter hurdles semifinal 15.05 girls 100-meter hurdles final 14.64 Lower Merion girls 4x100 relay preliminary 51.74 Gabby O'Leary, LMHS girls 300-meter hurdles preliminary 47.78 Laura Peterson, LMHS girls 800-meter run preliminary 2:23.66 Lower Merion girls 4x400 relay preliminary 4:04.31 Eliana Yankelev, LMHS girls high jump 5'3" Severine Dalembert, LMHS girls discus 92'8" Glad Doron, LMHS boys 1,600-meter run preliminary 4:33.62 Max Norris, HHS boys 1,600-meter run final 4:19 Shane Foust, HHS boys 400-meter dash preliminary 50.35 Dan Litt, LMHS boys 400-meter dash preliminary 50.51 Mike McGowen, LMHS boys 3,200-meter run 9:47.49 James Chimekas, LMHS boys long jump 20'10.25"