Lawler, Merrill Punch Their Tickets To Nationals

After a one-year hiatus, Ellie Lawler is heading back to the west coast.

The South Kingstown junior finished eighth overall at the Foot Locker Northeast Regionals on Saturday, earning her second trip to the nationals in the last three years. She also qualified as a sophomore. As a ninth-grader, Lawler made it to the Nike Cross Nationals (NXN). 

Lawler wasn't the only RI runner to punch her ticket to the nationals. At the NXN Northeast Regionals, Portsmouth junior Nikki Merrill placed fifth overall at 18:51.8. La Salle Academy's Grace Connolly was tenth overall. 

In the boys' race, Bishop Hendricken came a placement short from qualifying, taking third overall. According to the speed ratings, the Hawks were ranked ninth prior to the meet. La Salle's Max DiMuccio was the first RI finisher in the race, taking 11th overall in 16:36.9. The Hawks' Aidan Tierney was 20th in 16:44.5. 

Hendricken took the overall title in the Open Race, which combined the finishers from two different races.