PA’s Tara Johnson improves AAA state cross country finish

Staff reports

Pittston Area senior Tara Johnson finished in the top third of the field for the third time Saturday morning during her fourth and final trip to the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association Cross Country Championships.

Johnson placed 64th out of 226 runners in the Class AAA girls field, finishing the 3.1-mile Hershey Parkview Course in 20:01. She finished 55 seconds faster and 77 spots higher than a year ago.

The time was the second best Johnson posted at the PIAA Championships during her career. She was a Class AA state medalist as a sophomore when she finished in 19:37 to take ninth place.

Midway through Johnson’s career, Pittston Area bumped up from Class AA to AAA in cross country based on the PIAA’s recalculation of enrollments every two years.

Johnson finished in the top 10 in District 2 four times in her career, culminating in this season’s championship in the District 2-4 Class AAA Subregional meet.

As a freshman, Johnson placed ninth in District 2 Class AA. She was fourth in the same race a year later, placing behind only three runners from eventual state champion Dallas.

Johnson was second and first in Class AAA the last two years.

On the state level, Johnson was 64th in AA as a freshman and 151st in AAA as a junior.

Staff reports

Reach the Sunday Dispatch newsroom at 570-655-1418 or by email at

Reach the Sunday Dispatch newsroom at 570-655-1418 or by email at

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