After record-setting career at Mercersburg Academy, York's Purnell set to compete in track and field at Shippensburg University


York's Tatiana Purnell, a senior at Mercersburg Academy, has committed to join the track and field team at Shippensburg University.

Mercersburg is about 90 miles west of York in Franklin County.

Purnell holds six different Mercersburg school records in indoor and outdoor events. Her indoor records are in the 55-meter hurdles (8.79 seconds), 60 hurdles (:9.54) and triple jump (32 feet, 0 inches). Her outdoor records are in the 100 hurdles (:15.70), 300 hurdles (:44.65) and 400 hurdles (1:03.82). She is the 2015 Mid-Atlantic Prep League champion in the indoor 55 hurdles and the outdoor 400 hurdles. Her school record in the 400 hurdles is also a MAPL league record.

Purnell has qualified for a state championship meet for three straight years (including as a sophomore at Dallastown High School, which she attended before coming to Mercersburg). In 2015, she competed in the 60 hurdles at the Pennsylvania Track and Field Coaches Association State Championships in State College.

Purnell serves as Mercersburg's student-council president and is an Academic All-MAPL honoree. She also played varsity field hockey for the Blue Storm. Purnell will graduate with Mercersburg's senior class on Saturday, May 23.

Mercersburg Academy is a coeducational, independent college preparatory boarding and day school in Mercersburg, with students enrolled in grades 9–12 and a postgraduate year. This year, there are approximately 435 students enrolled from 30 states and 40 nations.

Mercersburg has produced 54 Olympians, including seven gold medalists in track and field. Alumni of the school are currently competing in athletics at more than 65 different colleges and universities, including Army, Georgetown, Harvard, Michigan, Navy, Nebraska, Southern California, Syracuse, Vanderbilt and Virginia.