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Williams leads PHS sweep of women’s two-mile

August 20, 2011
By STEVE HEMMELGARN ( , News and Sentinel Half Marathon

PARKERSBURG - Parkersburg High had a 1-2 sweep in the women's two-mile race of the News and Sentinel Half Marathon Saturday morning.

Vienna's Kaylee Williams, 15, who will start her junior year at PHS Monday, is a member of both the Big Red cross country and track teams.

Williams covered the two-mile course Saturday in 13:19.63 to come out ahead of PHS teammate Rachel Morris, also 15, of Parkersburg who was right behind Williams across the finish line at 13:20.20. The Big Red duo were 64th and 66th overall in the final two-mile standings.

Third place went to Beverly Knight, 17, of St. Marys in 13:25.36 for a 67th overall result.

Williams, in her third Half Marathon two-mile race, has ''been running track since fourth grade, and cross country since the seventh.'' Previously, she's ''always placed in my age group, but I never got first overall.''

But Williams accomplished both of those feats at the same time Saturday.

Before, her two-mile time ''has usually been around 14 minutes,'' but Williams undercut that by about 40 seconds Saturday. She attributes some of that significant drop to ''running a lot outside of (regular cross country/track) practice, but practice has helped a lot too.''

And Williams noted a cooler than normal 8:10 a.m. two-mile start might have helped her as well. ''It's usually really hot, but was a lot different today because it was cooler,'' she said.

Williams also gave some credit to Morris for her win, as the PHS cross country team ''all get together and run the two mile'' en masse. ''Rachel was right beside me, and she helps out a lot,'' said Williams.

Williams, who ''did a few road races last summer, but not recently,'' usually runs the mile and 800 in track, and expects to be back next year to defend her two-mile title.

She said she ''might do the half marathon after I graduate from high school - but that'll be a while yet.''



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