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Cramp hinders Sarah Sellers, who finishes 19th in women’s field

Sarah Sellers, with her pace slowing, climbs Heartbreak Hill.
Sarah Sellers, with her pace slowing, climbs Heartbreak Hill. (craig walker/globe staff)

A year after her surprise second-place finish at the Boston Marathon, Sarah Sellers crossed the finish line on Boylston Street once again. In Monday’s 123rd running of the race, she finished her 26.2 miles in 2 hours, 36 minutes, 42 seconds, just six seconds shy of her personal best.

Sellers, 27, wearing bib number F23, placed 19th.

“I’m happy I finished,” Sellers said. “I think that was the most painful marathon I’ve ever done.”

While conditions were far better than the original forecast — and than those she endured in her 2018 race — a right leg cramp plagued Sellers near the 15-mile mark.

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The nurse anesthetist from Tucson, Ariz., reached the halfway point at 1:15:27, with her mile averages hovering between 5:39 and 5:55. Her pace slowed at 25 kilometers, when she clocked in at 6:01 per mile.

Before the cramp, she said, “I felt super comfortable. It was kind of a mechanical issue that I’ll figure out and be better next time.

“It was a struggle to finish, but I’m happy I finished.”

Having crossed her fourth marathon off her agenda, there are a few items left on Sellers’s to-do list. She has already qualified for the Olympic trials, which will be held in February 2020 ahead of the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo.

“I’m going to take a couple weeks to recover from all of this, to figure out why I felt the way I did through this,” she said. “I’ll start another training block in a few weeks.”

But first up, Sellers said, was some cookie dough ice cream to celebrate.

Related: Results from the 2019 Boston Marathon

Sights and sounds from the 2019 Boston Marathon
Runners take off from the starting line at the 2019 Boston Marathon (Shelby Lum/Globe Staff)