Cross country runners qualify for state competition

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Cross country runners qualify for state competition

Alex Helm, Writer

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The sound of running feet pound on the course. The woosh of heavy breathing could be heard as runners passed by. The cross country team ran hard at their region race in Lubbock last weekend.

After the final runner crossed the finish line, the placements were announced. The varsity girls placed fourth. The varsity boys placed seventh.

After the meet, the varsity teams felt they could have run better, yet two individual runners advanced to state. Junior Logan Hendrix placed 10th for varsity boys and sophomore Maddy Reed placed 4th for varsity girls. The state competition will be held this weekend in Round Rock.

“We are all pretty upset about not going to state as a team this year but we are also really proud of Maddy and Logan,” junior Cecilia Crump said.

Cecilia’s twin sister, junior Beatrice Crump, said she knows a lot of girls on the team are going to the meet to support Maddy. But the team still has another chance to run. The top 14 girls and top 14 boys are going to Nike Cross Region, a big race in The Woodlands on Nov. 23.

“We’re competing against teams from other states,” junior Beatrice Crump said. “If we win Nike Cross Region, which is incredibly hard, then we get to go to Nike Nationals, which is in Oregon.”

To prepare for the races, the team practices every day at 6:45 a.m. Two days of the week they work on speed, and on Thursdays they have long distance runs. On average they run between 38 and 50 miles each week. But the team has to deal with more than difficult practices. Coach Steve Telaneus recently broke his hip and went through hip surgery. He hasn’t been able to coach at the team’s practices.

“Coach T is the heart of our team,” Cecilia said. “It’s been hard for us, but we’ve been powering through it.”

The team’s motivation comes from their coach. He keeps them focused.

“It’s been hard adjusting without Coach T,” Beatrice said. “But [Coach] Brevard has been really great, and we’ve had parents that have really stepped up.”

Despite the adversity the runners have faced this year, they have help from parents and other coaches. One parent of a cross country runner alum has been especially helpful to the team.

“He took off all his mornings from work for three weeks to come bike with us,” Beatrice said. “He really helps out.”

Though the runners have support from coaches and parents, what keeps the team focused is running together.

“[I love] when we run as a team,” Cecilia said. “And during winter when we go Christmas caroling. We sing songs while we run.”

As the season finishes up, the team’s bond is stronger than ever.

“[I love] the people,” Beatrice said. “We’re a family.”

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