Ping, Hasz Wins Leave Us Wondering: Who Is The Best Girl In Minnesota?
The crux of nearly every state championship event is class division that separates the best individuals and teams into different races. At the Minnesota State Championships on Saturday, No. 13 nationally ranked seventh-grader Grace Ping easily won the Class A title by 50 seconds in 17:52, though her time ranked only No. 5 on the day.
Alexandria Jefferson twins Bethany and Megan Hasz placed 1-2 in the Class AA race for the third year in a row, this time in course record fashion as Bethany ran 17:32.5 and Megan ran 17:39.3. The twins ranked No. 13 and No. 14 in the Pre-Season National Rankings as they are two of the top returners from NXN. Megan placed fifth and Bethany ninth at the 2014 national championship. They slipped from the rankings as they raced mostly small-scale events this fall.
Ping's national relevance comes from winning the prestigious Roy Griak Invitational in September over Judy Pendergast of Naperville North, who is currently ranked No. 14 and has held the nation's fastest three mile all season. Just how fast? Today, she ran 15:53.8 en route to breaking the historic Detweiller Park course record and winning the Illinois Class 3A state title.
We feel sorry for the people who have to come up with national rankings out of this... oh, wait. That's us. See you on Monday.
A few other notes from the Minnesota state meet:
- No. 20 ranked Jaret Carpenter of Wayzata (pictured above) wins first state title in 15:26 (Class AA)
- No. 8 Hopkins boys score just 34 points to convincingly defeat No. 19 Minneapolis Washburn (67 pts) with 25-second spread/15:55 5K avg
- No. 20 Edina girls top Class AA with 68 pts/43-second spread/18:35 5K avg, unranked Marshall (76 pts) sneaks into second over No. 21 Willmar (119 pts)
Photos by Teri Durbin