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Mepham’s Carissa Kahn overcomes the obstacles at Steeplepolooza

Mepham's Carissa Kahn falls on her hands before

Mepham's Carissa Kahn falls on her hands before winning the girls 2,000-meter steeplechase during Steeplepolooza at Great Neck North on Thursday, April 13, 2017. Photo Credit: Patrick E. McCarthy

Mepham’s Carissa Kahn had just built a sizable lead early in the 2,000-meter steeplechase race Thursday when things began falling apart.

The senior went over the hurdle placed in front of the event’s signature water pit and took a hard fall as water splashed around her. She braced herself with her hands and tumbled forward. Then she picked herself up, pressed forward and won the race at Great Neck North’s Steeplepolooza in 7:58.9.

Her reward: A hefty ice pack for her swollen hand.

“I got nervous the second lap when I fell, but then I just tried to keep going and I think I knew I had it,” Kahn said. “And then I finished with a nice kick at the end.

Kahn, a member of the Pirates’ track team for four years, decided to get into the event this season after the recommendation from a former teammate. She said she enjoyed the added excitement of scaling the hulking obstacles during a race distance around what she would normally run, the 3,000.

“I wanted to try it out and see how I would do in it,” Kahn said. “It’s cool because it’s something else to add on to it.”

Each barrier is immovable and can be climbed or hurdled. Kahn said she made a point to clear each steeple in one shot, accelerating as she came up to it.

“I wanted to try this race to see if I could push myself . . . I wanted to see how I would do,” Kahn said.

Plainview-Old Bethpage JFK’s Sinead Heaney took second in 8:14.8 and Cold Spring Harbor’s Samantha Reim third in 8:19.20.

Warshawsky wins boys Steeplechase. Roslyn’s Todd Warshawsky hung back at the start of the boys 3,000 steeplechase, but quickly found his moment. He went from being part of the pack to taking a commanding lead in a single lap.

“It was about three laps in on the back straightaway, I went out into the third lane or so, got a clean hurdle over and I just used the straightaway to accelerate and try to take the lead by the curve and held onto it,” Warshawsky said.

The senior won in 10:33, followed by Mepham’s Matthew Gemma in 10:45 and Great Neck North’s Matthew Weinstein in 10:46.4.

“Early on, I was trying to focus on my form a bit more and then when I made my move, I let myself open up — opened up my stride and that was it,” Warshawsky said.

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