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XC Crosses the Finishing Line

FHS students earn spots at states
Mrs. Cook
Breanna Bone (9), who finished 8th, and Laila Stevens (9), who finished 7th, with their medals from the Class 3, District 1, meet at Notre Dame High School in Cape Girardeau on October 28. These placings allowed the runners to enter the state meet in Columbia, Missouri, on November 4.

Cross country is an afterschool sport club where you have to train to run miles without stopping. This year, FHS sent two freshmen girls, Breanna Bone and Laila Stephens, to the state championship race, and they came back with amazing 34th and 35th place finishes, respectively, in a massive 5K of 171 racers.

The top scoring people we have in cross country see themselves accomplishing great things in five to ten years. Larkin Strong (9) responded, “I want to be sent to college with a running scholarship.” Charis Moss (9) said, “I want to become a stronger athlete.”  Laila Stephens (9) said, “I want to keep trying to be an all-state athlete.” Thinking a little nearer in time, Breanna Bone (9) has plans to go to the zoo after cross country ends for the year.

Of course, each runner has a current best performance to report. Breanna’s was holding state records, and Laila liked qualifying for state racing. Some even have other running or leadership skills that they have developed. Larkin ran 4×4 track, breaking her best record. Charis loves teambuilding.

Not every race turns out well, however. When thinking about the worst sports performances, what did athletes learn from these experiences? Larkin said, “I had trouble running for five kilometers, and I learned to push through it.” Charis had been worried about injury: “I have had problems with me rolling my ankles, and I learned to be more careful while training.” Breanna said that “not stretching well enough before racing hurts my hip.” Laila had a different issue common to distance runners: “I eat too much before racing and learned this: don’t eat before racing.”

Athletes were also asked, “Do you have any hobbies or interests outside of sports?” Charis likes to hunt and go fishing. Breanna likes to barrel race. Laila said, “I like to read and go hang out with my friends.”

The final question revealed the best piece of advice they’ve gained from a coach. Larkin was given this advice from a former mentor, Coach Laut: “If you put your mind to it, you will work hard for it.” Charis was told, “Keep your head up and keep pushing,” from coach Garrity. Laila remembers one of her coaches along the line saying, “Don’t worry too much.”

Thanks, cross county, for a great finish to your season!


Charis Moss running for the finishing line (Mrs. Cook)
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Dominick Rehkop, Writer
A beginner in scratchpad. He doesn't know what he is doing, but he is trying his best. First year of this whole Scratch pad thing, so he is trying to blend in with everyone here.