Young, Agressive, and Constantly Improving: Cross Country runners push their boundaries

Sita Ahlen, Reporter

At the Spartan Invite, in early October, three girls broke personal records, one of them by nearly 2 minutes. At the meet held in west Bear Creek Park, the girls, who finished third place as a team in the junior varsity open race, proved that they have a historical opportunity to qualify for state later this month.

The girls’ team is almost all freshman and sophomore runners, and they’re doing great for the end of this season, although nearly all the girls on the team are battling sickness and normal injury you would see with young runners. As a team, they’re ranked in the top half of the region. If they can place in the top five at regionals, October 16, they’ll have qualified for state as a team for the first time since anyone can remember.

Brooklyn Mack (9) and Kaitlyn Davidson (9) could individually qualify for state this year if they are among the top 15 individuals at regionals, but they are both struggling with overcoming injuries. Mack already ran a near-state qualifying time earlier this season at the Pueblo Central Invitational, and Davidson is close also.

Jen Cole (10) has shown huge amounts of improvement this season, her running has improved almost every time since her first race, and she keeps getting faster.

This has been a rough season for the boys cross country team though, with nearly all the boys having missed at least one meet due to illness. They missed their top runner, Jared Keul, three times due to the common cold.

Yet despite these setbacks, they made big improvements. All of the freshman boys broke 22 minute barriers, and almost all of the sophomores broke 20 minute barriers.

This year, the team is mostly freshmen and sophomores who are all achieving just as much as the older runners. At the Spartan Invite, 6 out of the 16 runners achieved their personal records, as well as newcomer Brian Hall (9) who ran his second meet this season.

Both boys and girls will run in the Tri Peaks League meet this Friday in Florence.