Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Injury Shelves Sprinter Central's George Misses Wpials

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Injury Shelves Sprinter Central's George Misses Wpials

Article excerpt

When the WPIAL track and field championships took place Thursday at Baldwin, a handful of stars looking to defend titles didn't participate because of injury or illness.

Central Catholic junior Ron George was one of the most notable.

George was the WPIAL Class AAA 200-meter dash champion last year and placed fifth at the PIAA championships. An outstanding football talent who has proven to be a blur on the track, George failed to qualify for this year's championships after sustaining a hamstring injury at last week's Northern Qualifier at Pine-Richland.

George joined a group of out-of-action standouts that includes Shaler Area distance runner Brianna Schwartz and Ambridge sprinter Isaac Elliott.

George, who holds the school record in the 200 with a time of 21.77 seconds, was thought to have had a good chance of successfully defending his title. But his hopes came crashing down in the semifinal heat at qualifiers.

About 50 meters into the race, George said he felt a sharp pain in his left hamstring. George continued to run, saying he almost fell, but finished the race in last place after running a time of 26.40.

A Duquesne resident, George said he had been experiencing discomfort in some earlier meets, but added "Someone from where I'm from, we fight through injuries."

The injury ended what had been an excellent season for George, who took first place at the Tri-State Track Coaches Association Championships at West Mifflin, third place at the Butler Invitational and fourth place at the Baldwin Invitational.

While obviously disappointed, George has remained positive.

"I'm not really stressing over it," George said. "I have another year. I'm going to take this time to evaluate myself and get some tips from [my competition]. It's OK to lose. You just to have push to get stronger."

This isn't the first time George has had to deal with an untimely injury. …

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