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Girls cross country: Slicers dominate Bob Thomas Invite at Lowell

LaPorte's #375 ElenLancioni sprints across finish line Bob Thomas Invitational 5K wevent 9/14/13 full 25 seconds ahead any  other

LaPorte's #375 Elena Lancioni, sprints across the finish line of the Bob Thomas Invitational 5K, to win the event on 9/14/13, a full 25 seconds ahead of the any other runners. | John Booz/for the Sun-Times Media

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Updated: October 16, 2013 6:56AM



LOWELL — After watching their male counterparts set a slew of personal records during the boys’ race at Saturday’s Bob Thomas Invite, the LaPorte girls’ team decided that they had to answer.

“After the boys’ race, when everyone got their best times ... we all decided to go for it today,” said LaPorte’s No. 1 runner, Elena Lancioni.

The result was a stellar performance from everyone wearing orange and black, as LaPorte placed two runners in the top three and five in the top 15 en route to a first-place team score of 38 points.

“I believe that all six girls who ran on the varsity team had a new PR today,” said LaPorte coach John Dearing. “It’s a great accomplishment for those girls. They’ve worked hard for it.”

The Slicers were led — as usual — by Lancioni, who gained an early lead and never looked back on her way to a first-place time of 18:09 — repeating as the event’s champion.

“I came so close to breaking 18:00 today, but it’s hard to sprint out there in the woods without falling,” said Lancioni, who was just nine seconds from that benchmark. “I was going to try and take it easy with the New Prairie meet coming up next week, but all of my teammates said they were going for it, so, I figured I might as well, too.”

Sophomore Kailee Schoff finished third for LaPorte with a time of 18:51, crossing the line between a pair of Hobart Brickies: Celena Guerrero (18:45, second) and Mindy Whidden (18:57, fourth). Portage freshman Rebecca Timm took fifth (19:39).

“We expected Kailee to be able to run with the two Hobart girls and she was able to split them, which was great for us,” Dearing said.

Kristin Cave (20:01, ninth), Alyssa Gerick (20:10, 12th) and Marie Didion (20:10, 13th) rounded the scorers in the LaPorte lineup.

“They worked really well together,” Dearing said. “They’ve been working on running as a pack to move up. We’ve ran real well so far this year and we’re hoping that we can carry it into the postseason.”

Portage (49) and Lake Central (67) finished second and third, respectively.



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