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Penn recruit Katherine Muccio, a sprinter from Ridgewood High School in New Jersey, got a preview of competition at Franklin Field in the Penn Relays on Thursday.

Credit: Nicole Fridling

The soon-to-be Quakers made an impact of the first day of the Penn Relays. 

This historic event — in its 125th year — brings in a myriad of talent and celebrities from around the track world. While current Penn athletes will be competing throughout the weekend, a few future Penn athletes will be center stage as well, trying to make a name for themselves before they set foot on campus next fall wearing the red and blue.

On Thursday, the field of athletes was largely comprised of high schoolers, as the events were separated into smaller and bigger schools, and the races go on throughout the day. The high school track competitions began in the morning and continued through the evening.

Katherine Muccio, a sprinter from Ridgewood, N.J., competed in the 400-meter hurdles and ran a personal best 1:01.33, which was good for fifth in her heat and eighth overall. This result is particularly encouraging because she will compete in the Girls' Distance Medley Championship of America later this weekend. For Ridgewood High School, she also regularly competes in the 200 and 400. Her personal best times for those events are 25.09 and 57.31, respectively. 

Muccio spent almost the entire summer last year in a boot, as she was recovering from a fracture and a tear in the deltoid bone of her right foot. Considering Thursday’s result, she has appeared to have made a full recovery.

Credit: Nicole Fridling

Penn recruit Grace O'Shea

Grace O'Shea, a hurdler and sprinter from Franklin Lakes, N.J., also competed in the 400m hurdles on Thursday. She has personal best times of 7.75 in the 55m hurdles, 14.05 in the 100m hurdles, and 1:01.91 in the 400m hurdles. She won the New Jersey state championship in the 55m hurdles last year and has had a strong season this year. According to northjersey.com, she is ranked No. 1 in New Jersey and No. 2 in the country in the 55m hurdles for high school. On Thursday morning she clocked in with a 1:03.59 mark in the 400m hurdles, finishing third in her heat and 13th overall. 

Delia Russo, a distance runner who hails from Colts Neck, N.J., will be competing later in the Girls' Distance Medley Championship of America, as well. She has personal bests of 5:13.51 in the mile, and 11:11.98 in the 3200. 

Credit: Alexa Cotler

Penn recruit Delia Russo

These future Penn athletes have had strong showings thus far, and they'll have even more opportunities to showcase their talent at Franklin Field when they arrive on campus next fall.

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