EAST PALESTINE - Wellsville senior Shartece Taylor is running scared.
Taylor hurt herself on the way to a state runner-up finish in the Division III 100-meter dash and has been running injured all season.
She came back from a nasty fall Tuesday in the preliminaries at the Columbiana County Track Meet to capture her fourth straight county title in the girls 100 meters.
"I fell hard," Taylor said. "It tightened up and I just tried to get across the finish line."
She is waiting until June before trying to get it corrected.
"I tore something in my hip flexor," Taylor said. "I either had to (get it fixed) or wait until after the season."
Running practically on one leg, Taylor held off Salem's Marissa Swindell for the county title in 12.74 seconds at Reid Stadium.
"It hurts a lot," Taylor said. "It's on and off. Some days I don't feel it."
She has run all season with a wrap around her right hip.
"I think about it - a lot," she said. "I love track and would be able to run without pain. But I can't."
Swindell won the 200 and 400 dashes in leading the Salem girls to another team title.
"Marissa Swindell is a great competitor and I like that," Taylor said.
"She definitely pushes me every year," Swindell said. "I think it's a shame she got hurt. I hope she recovers quickly."
Taylor also was seeking a fourth straight county title in the 400 relay, but the Tigers finished second behind Swindell and the Quakers.
Had Taylor not been seeking to repeat her county titles, her day most likely would have been done after falling in the preliminaries.
"It meant a lot," she said. "I probably would have, but not for the finals."
Now Taylor's thoughts turn toward the end of her high school career and a return trip to the state meet.
"I'm really worried," she said. "I try to think positive, but my leg is hurting bad. I'm hoping I can get through districts and regionals."