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Exeter's Gaughan fifth at national meet

Staff Report
December 10. 2017 3:25AM

Jackie Gaughan finishes fifth at the Foot Locker Cross Country Championships on Saturday. (Courtesy)

Jackie Gaughan finished her high school career as a four-time All American after placing fifth Saturday in the Foot Locker Cross Country Championships on Saturday in San Diego.

The Exeter High School senior finished the 5-kilometer course in 17 minutes, 44.6 seconds, 41 seconds behind winner Claudia Lane of Malibu, Calif.

"I'm really happy with (the race), she said. "I ran a smart race and I gave it all I had. I didn't have any energy at the finish line and I probably ran harder than I have my whole high school career.... It was a great way to end the season and my high school career."

It was not her last high school race, though. She'll run indoor and outdoor track at Exeter before heading to Notre Dame next fall to run cross-country as well as spring and winter track.

She said she enjoyed running in the event against familiar competition. She finished 11th in it last year.

"I raced againt a couple of them before," she said. "It's very nice. It was very comforting having raced here before, I'm in a comfortable spot."

Gaughan was accompanied to San Diego by her mother, Kim, her high school coach, Joe Scascitelli, and friend and mentor Cathy Schiro O'Brien, who won the 1984 Foot Locker Cross Country Championships as a Dover High School senior, and competed in the 1988 and 1992 Summer Olympics in the marathon.

"She's really helped me as a runner and I'm really thankful for that," Gaughan said.

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