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    Skoczen punches ticket to state


    Independence senior Emily Skoczen is headed back to the state cross country meet after finishing as one of the top 16 runners at Saturday’s regional at Boardman High School.

    Skoczen, who finished 77th at state last season, placed 12th at regionals with a personal best time of 20:24.

    “I knew going into the meet it wasn’t going to be easy to make it into that top 16 group but I found the girls that have beat me throughout the season and stuck with them,” Skoczen said. “I couldn’t be happier to run one last race as a Blue Devil.”

    Last fall, Skoczen placed 11th at regionals but finished in 20:52. She dropped one place this season but cut her time by eight seconds.

    She hopes to do the same at the state meet.

    “This course can be tough but I paced myself throughout and found another gear when I needed it,” she said. “Next week, I want to try and end my high school cross country career with a career-best and place as high as I can.”

    Junior Makenna McGhee also competed at regionals. She placed 28th in 21:19.

    Steve Hare
    The creator and publisher of, Hare has covered high school sports in Northeast Ohio since 1997. He began as a correspondent for the Lake County News Herald, where he contributed until 2011, primarily covering high school football and wrestling. In 1999, Hare began writing for, a member of the network of high school and college sports web sites. He focuses on covering Notre Dame football recruiting. was created in 2004 and was a member of the network until 2012. The site's original purpose was to cover Ohio high school football and recruiting news but since has grown to cover all sports and to provide sports information services to high school athletic programs and individual teams. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.
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