Girls’ Cross Country Looks to Return to State

A Season of Hope

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Girls’ Cross Country Looks to Return to State

Rachel Puckett, Journalism 2

Rachel Puckett, Journalism 2

Rachel Puckett, Journalism 2

Rachel Puckett, Journalism 2

Rachel Puckett, Journalism 2

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Snow adrift upon the barren ground. Huddles begin to form as the frigid air slowly creeps into our breath. Frozen sweat appears on each of our exhausted bodies.

The task is completed. Now we wait.

Announcements commence; places 7-9 are a blur. If we rank 6th our chance for state is gone. Senior Lydia Gapp will never compete in the High School State competition again; she needs this. “And in 6th place we have…”

That was in 2014, my first year on the cross-country team. Three of us middle schoolers had been given the chance to compete with the GRC Varsity Team in the regional competition.

Top five out of nine teams were accepted to race in the state meet. The GRC girls hadn’t made it to state in three years. Our single senior was putting her hope in underclassmen to take her back to the “top dogs meet.” And that is just what happened.

Today our team is composed of those three middle schoolers, who are now sophomores and a junior, and top athletes for the girls’ varsity team.

Over our various seasons the team has grown and developed, not just person or ability wise, but together also. We have become a family. While our own personal accomplishments are a goal, we value team success over any other aspect.

Last year the girls stuck together to become one of the best GRC Cross Country teams in school history. We placed 2nd in regions and were five points shy of 1st place.

Our hard work paid off and we worked together to attain the unthinkable. Many of us have even competed in the state competition for multiple years in a row.

Each day we train with even more purpose. We work together to lift each other up and keep our eye on the goal.

Building relationships with these girls has proved to be beneficial athletically and support-wise. My teammates are not just my friends but also are my sisters; today we train and endure pain, never alone.

Our team is composed of Julia Graves, Emma Taylor, Maria Jackson, Emma Bowling, Sydney Partin, Ashlan
Brookshire and Julia Pohl.

Our girls are looking fierce this year, as we have had many teammates already reach their record times. We desire a regional championship; our practicing habits will prove nothing less.

No matter what our motivation is, we all are ready to exceed expectation, together. Fire in our eyes, hearts firmly set on the prize, we push towards regionals where we will give it our all.