Cross Country sets new records
November 26, 2019
The Springhill Cross Country runners went to state and placed 7th with their new coach, Ashton Wells. After securing the win in regionals in October, they had the opportunity to travel to Round Rock, Texas on November 9,2019 for state. They had to run a 3.1 mile at Old Settlers’ Park.
Winning regionals as a team and earning a podium spot as an individual felt more rewarding than our performance at state,” Senior Kalen Barlow said. “State was a letdown and our expectations were much higher.”
Jaden Giddings placed 98th place in the 5k on November 9, 2019. He is a freshman this year and he made it in the top 100.
“ I was shocked, ” freshman Jaden Giddings said. “ I was happy that I got the experience to go to state.”
Ashton Wells the coach for Cross Country was new this year to our school and our runners. She ran
“ I was proud of my kids’ performance,” Cross Country Coach Ashton Wells said.” Although I felt bad for them because they wanted to be on the podium.”
Many seniors ended the season as top 100 in the state. Kalen Barlow who is a senior this year got 13th place in the state with a 16 minute 3.1 mile.
“This final cross country season was special and there is no other team I would have spent it with,” Senior Cross Country runner Kalen Barlow said. “I would like to thank each and every one of my teammates.”
Thinking that track and cross-country are the same is like thinking that football and rugby are the same; both sports are completely different and once you observe their meets, that difference becomes apparent. Both sports include running and meets, but there’s more to each sport than those two aspects.
Cross country involves more running and a stronger emphasis on maintaining the pace.
“With XC (cross country), it’s more about endurance,” said Cross Country runner Caleb Hutchenson. Running up to 50 miles a week, and working in holding a race for a longer amount of time.”
During the season, the cross country usually does training on hills because they run in natural terrain, unlike track, which involves running on a track. Cross country courses differ with location and locations with fewer hills are usually a favorite among runners because they are not as tiring.
“In cross country, we run a variety of terrains. Most of our running will be on soft surfaces like trails, grass. However, we will also occasionally be running on the track, gravel, and asphalt. We also get to run on hills, not just flat ground,” said Cross Country runner Caleb Hutchenson.
In some sports the time is important, but in Cross Country beating your opponents is key.
“The time on the clock is irrelevant, you are simply trying to beat your opponents,” said Freshman Cross Country runner Jaden Giddings.
Coach Wells only wants the best for the Cross Country team.
“I hope to see them go beyond whatever trail they’ve already on and conquered,” said Cross Country Coach Ashton Wells.
More than a win
Cross country is more than just a team of long distance runners, they are a family. Even through tough times and losses they are still there for each other.
“After the crash, when i was in the hospital, the team lined the halls and came to visit me.” Coach Jordan Alford said, “ We’ve always ran for more than just the win.”
Everyone enjoys the bonding experience, even those who haven’t ran with the team for long.
“I enjoy building relationships [with the team] and seeing them succeed.” Coach Ashton Wells said, “I’ve learned a lot from the kids.”
Through this year the team has been inspired to go further with their running career.
“I love running,” freshman Jaden Giddings said “I really want to continue through college.”
No matter what though the cross country team will support each other through thick and thin and work together as a family.
“It was hard [not being able to communicate with the team],” Coach Alford said, “[but] we don’t run for the title of winning we run for the experience of being together.”