The race between the two best high school girls 800-meter runners in Suffolk County lived up to expectations and then some on Tuesday afternoon.
Shoreham Wading River sophomore Katherine Lee outdueled Bishop-McGann Mercy senior Meg Tuthill, the top seed, defeating her rival by a step to capture the Division III crown at Comsewogue High School.
Lee, the second seed, posted a time of 2 minutes 17.27 seconds, only 39/100ths of a second faster than her Monarch counterpart in a thrilling finish.
Shoreham senior Kaitlyn Ohrtman (2:18.64) was third. Mercy juniors Maddie Joinnides (2:20.51) and Kaitlyn Butterfield (2:22.49) finished fifth and sixth, respectively as several scattered showers doused athletes from time to time.
More than an hour later, Lee won her second title of the day, securing the 3,000 run in 10:07.10. Teammate and junior Alexandra Hays (10:21.91) was second, followed by Mattituck junior Melanie Pfenning (10:35.33) in third place, Mercy junior Devyn O’Brien (10:43.75) came in fourth and Mattituck eighth-grader Payton Maddaloni (10:51.30) was fifth.
Shoreham’s strong showing in both finals boosted the Wildcats into the team lead after the first day of competition with 34 points. Mercy (15) was second and Mattituck (eight) was sixth entering Thursday’s competition.
In other results of interest:
• Mercy sophomore Olivia Kneski (1:01.26) qualified for the Division III finals in the 400.
• Mattituck’s 4×100 relay team qualified for the Division II final in 53.36. The Tuckers were buoyed by four underclassmen — junior Alya Ayoub, sophomores Jordyn Maichin and Meg Dinizio and freshman Miranda Annunziata.
Photo caption: Shoreham-Wading River sophomore Katherine Lee winning the Division III 800-meter race. (Credit: Robert O’Rourk)