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Girls Track & Field: Patriots win Inter-Ac League Championship

By: Joe Cicchino - Sports Information Assistant

NEWTOWN SQUARE -- As Molly Oeth '20 crossed the finish line, capping off Germantown Academy's first-place finish in the Girls 4x400 relay, her teammates and coaches ran to meet her and celebrated. The final race of the Inter-Ac League Track Championships was not an important one for the Patriots -- Head Coach Dion Lehman said he told the girls to treat it as a "victory lap" -- but it did serve as an exclamation point to a fantastic day.

With 150 points, Germantown Academy's girls track and field team became the 2019 Inter-Ac League Champions. 

"I thought everyone came out and competed well," Lehman said. "The girls really stepped up. We knew we had to have a good day and we had a great day."

Leading the way for the Patriots on their great day was Issy Goldstein '20. The junior won all three of the events in which she was entered and was named Female Athlete of the Meet. Goldstein went 2:17.90 in the 800m run and 4:57.97 in the 1600m. She set a new league record in the 3200m with a time of 10:50.02.

"Going into the mile first, I knew it was going to be tactical," Goldstein said. "I wasn't going for time because I knew I had two more challenging races ahead. The 800 was tougher because PC had some great runners in that race. It was definitely mentally tough, but it was worth it."

GA not only dominated the distance events, but also the sprints. Fore Abinusawa '22 started her afternoon by setting a new league record in the 100m Dash with a time of 11.78 before setting another record in another event almost three hours later. The freshman went 24.47 in the 200m, breaking the old mark of 11.9.

In addition to taking first in the 4x400, GA also took first in the 4x100. 

Earlier in the day, Meaghan Toscano '20, Sarah Fineman '21, Myah Taylor '20, Cianni Williams '20 and Olivia McMichael '20 controlled the shot put pit, occupying five of the top-seven finishing spots. Toscano '20 took first and broke her old league record of 41-10 with a 42-9.75 throw. Meanwhile, Fineman took third (34-11.25), Taylor placed fifth (31-7.00), Williams finished sixth (28-6.00) and McMichael took seventh (27-4.25).

Toscano headlines the group, but almost all of the throwers brought in a point for the Patriots. Based off of the numbers, Toscano believes they are the best group of throwers in the league. 

"I think that there's no doubt about it," Toscano said. "Seven people go to finals, we have five girls and all five of us went to finals. Four people scored out of the six that can. We got 19 points total. I feel like it's not really a debate."

Lily Cohen '20 and Quartnei Brown '21 helped GA also, taking the top-two spots in the girls pole vault. Brown placed second in the event, clearing 10-6.00 and tying the league record.

However, Cohen topped that mark, clearing 12-6.00 and taking home first place. Although her goal was to reach 13 feet, the junior is not too upset.

"Overall it was a great performance," Cohen said. "This was actually a really big confidence booster. The run was good, the inverse is coming together, I just need a little push off the top and 13 is right there."

While the top finishes are nice, Lehman mentioned a few events that earned some unexpected points and provided momentum. Among them were Perry Irons' '21 second-place finish in the 300m hurdles, Juli Gonzalez's '22 fourth-place finish in the 800 and Olivia Merril '22 finishing fifth in the 3200. 

The Patriots got a second place finish from Cobree Hooper '19 in the 100 hurdles, a third-place finish from Alex Goodridge '22 in the long jump, a fourth-place finish in the 400 from Oeth, and fifth-place finishes in the high jump and long jump via Destiny Mayfield '20 and Sasha Capers '20, respectively. 

GA has a week before their next competition, the Pennsylvania Independent Schools Athletic Association Championships, but Lehman has a plan already in mind.

"We're going to qualify a ton of athletes for PAISAA," Lehman said. "We're going to go back and recharge and try to go back at it next Saturday."

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