Haskell was it's usual self; welcoming, yet daunting. The rain fell beautifully across the course bringing with it cooler weather and muddy terrain. The runners began filing in as the rain started to lift but the cloud cover remained. Light chatter and conversation could be heard as the harriers took off on their pre-race warm-up jog around the course. They made sure to hit crucial areas of confusion before returning to the tent to spike up.
The boys took off at 8:01AM. As they traversed the course, it was apparent that they were ahead of where they were last year. While the course -- now redone and revamped -- offered new challenges with it's tighter turns and steep ascents, the runners pushed through and made quick work of their timed trial. Similar to last year, we have a strong three up front in soph Jack Ryan, senior Ruben Littlehead, and frosh Lucas Holmberg. But following closely behind were freshmen Jack Pfeifer and Eli Marburger; both of which should be valuable contributors to the varsity squad this season.
As the boys concluded and everyone was gearing up for their cool-down, the girls race got underway at 8:35AM. The girls were off to a speedy start as they came through the mile in the 6:30 range without signs of letting-up. Frosh Lucy Hardy was gliding across the course with ease with soph transfer Diana Messick close in tow. Senior Sophie DeWitt rounded out the top three as she ran one of her fastest time trials of her high school career. Bringing up the 4th and 5th positions were soph Madison DeWitt and junior Jayden Wilson. The girls appear to have reloaded this year and should be deep.
Time trials are an invaluable way of gauging where the runners are coming off of a summer packed with nothing but miles; no speed work. And they did not disappoint! We are ecstatic for what the newcomers bring to the table and can only hope that everyone enjoys their cross country experience! A fire has been ignited and Manhattan is only two short weeks away!
Later in the day, we held our annual beginning-of-the-season potluck out at Holcom where the kids have the opportunity to just be kids. They get to play volleyball, basketball, throw frisbees around, eat an endless amount of delicious food, and mingle with teammates that they may not quite know very well. On top of that, we the coaches get to go around and speak with new and old parents and get to know them on a more personal level.
It's going to be a great season, we can feel it!
(p.s. - photos are available under the photos tab)