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Leff advances to national cross country meet

WG sophomore takes fifth at Foot Locker Northeast Regional

Thanks to her efforts on an unseasonably warm Thanksgiving weekend, West Genesee girls cross country sophomore Laura Leff has one more race to run.

Leff found her way to the top of the standings at last Saturday’s Foot Locker Cross Country Championships Northeast Regional Qualifier, held at Sunken Meadow Park on Long Island.

Amid an elite field of 86, Leff posted a time of 18 minutes, 26.1 seconds, which put her in fifth place, by far the best time of any sophomore. The next-closest 10th grader, Penfield native Katie Lembo, was back in 16th place in 19:05.8. Angel Piccirillo, a senior from Homer City in western Pennsylvania, won the race in 18:01.4.

So now Leff advances to the Foot Locker Cross Country Championships National Finals, to take place Dec. 10 at Balboa Park’s Morley Field in San Diego, Calif.

She joins Piccirillo, Abbey Leonardi (Maine), Catarina Rocha (Mass.), Holly Bischof (N.J.), Hannah Oneda (Md.), Alexis Pannise (Queens, N.Y.), Caroline Kellner (N.J.), Meredith Speakman (Pa.) and Tori Gerlach (Pa.) as the Northeast Regional qualifiers.

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