Junior sprinter, senior distance runner lead Penn-Trafford track team

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Sunday, April 10, 2022 | 8:01 AM


It may not result in a WPIAL track and field title in 2022, but Penn-Trafford coach Eric Reger is excited about the future of his program.

That’s because he has a talented group of underclassmen who are on the squad and winning events.

The Warriors are 1-1 overall, defeating Greensburg Salem and falling to Hempfield.

The Warriors, led by junior sprinter Kate Schall and senior distance runner Chloe Bonson, are ready for the challenges ahead.

Schall, who runs the 100-, 200- and 400-meter dashes, has not lost in individual races she has run. She finished eighth in the 400 at the WPIAL Class 3A meet in 2021.

“The 400 is my favorite race because of my long stride,” Schall said. “It gives me an advantage.”

Depending on the event, Schall also could compete in either the 400- or 1,600-meter relays.

“I like the people on the team, and it’s neat when you finish your race that your teammates are cheering you on,” Schall said. “My goal is to make the WPIALs and qualify for states. I just want to do better than I did a year ago.”

Schall also plays volleyball.

She said the tough practices should help achieve her goals.

“Kate loves to run, and she really wants to be here,” Reger said. “She’s a very hard worker. She likes coming to practice every day. She likes the work reward aspect of the sport.”

Bonson reaching the PIAA cross country championship in Hershey in the fall should help her because she knows the competition.

“I’ve coached Chloe since seventh grade, and she’s a hard worker,” Reger said. “She’s always looking for extra things to do. It’s good to have athletes like that.”

Her goals are similar to Schall’s: qualifying for WPIALs and states.

“I’m doing as many events as I can and posting as many good times as possible,” Bonson said. “I think my mentality is the key. I’m really trying to push myself. When I get tired, I know I have more to give. I try to push it as far as I can.”

She said making it to Hershey gives her more motivation to do it again.

“It would be neat to qualify in both,” Bonson said.

Reger said he is excited about how many kids came up from middle school.

Some of the boys who have scored points early include sophomore sprinter Jake Nardozza, freshman middle distance runner Jake McGhee, freshman hurdler Aidon Lett and sophomore hurdler Joe Ambrose.

“We’re heavily weighted toward ninth and 10th graders,” Reger said. “It really helps our numbers and scoring so far.”

Paul Schofield is a TribLive reporter covering high school and college sports and local golf. He joined the Trib in 1995 after spending 15 years at the Daily Courier in Connellsville, where he served as sports editor for 14 years. He can be reached at pschofield@triblive.com.

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