Girls’ Cross Country: a smart start season

Maria Cass

While most people were enjoying their lazy summers, the girls’ cross country team was hard at work training for the upcoming season: “We started training in the end of June,” said sophomore Georgia Lucas, “but we didn’t start hardcore training until mid-August.” So, for all you athletes who complain about August games and practices, these girls don’t want to hear it.

Of course the girls don’t mind the extra running; that’s why they joined cross country in the first place, that and “the runner’s high is amazing,” said junior Caitlin Van Sloun.

Since most junior highs and middle schools don’t have running programs available to their students, freshmen do not often decide to go out for cross country. Luckily for the incoming freshmen, Jim Wander has potential students sign up at open houses so that they can receive information.
“This year the team is more experienced,” said long-time coach Mr. Wander. Junior captain Marissa Schuh agrees: “We are looking really good.” This is due in part to the depth of the team. Out of eleven runners with the potential to run varsity times, only seven are allowed to run varsity at a single meet. Because of this flexibility, the team can afford to have sicknesses and other complications without it affecting their chance to place well.
The team is led by Lucas who is hoping to make it to the state competition this year, although it will be tough because “Section Six has traditionally produced state championship teams,” said long-time coach Mr. Wander.
Besides the hard training and dedication, the girls are really close and have shared many good time. The most memorable this year so far was their trip to Marshfield, Wisconsin over Labor Day weekend, where they bonded at Perkins and got fake tattoos.
The team’s main rival is Visitation; most of the girls agree that the “Tomahawks are the hottest guy’s team,” and as multiple team members pointed out, the girls’ team collectively has more fat than the guys’ team (they view this as a positive thing.)
With only six meets left in the season and having already placed sixth in the Red Knight Invite and tenth in the Eden Prairie Invite, the girls’ cross country team encourages a fan base to come to their meets and cheer them on as they compete to finish off with a successful season.