Ashley McNeil, Sports Editor
With the start of school also comes the start of another wonderful cross country season. The season started September 7th, and will end with the B.C. Championships on November 7th. From September to November, a runner’s week would consist of recovery on Tuesday, speed on Thursday after school and a breakfast tempo run at Derby Reach on Saturday mornings. While most students would spend their Saturdays sleeping in, our cross country team wakes up bright and early for another day of training. During their first run at Derby Reach, the members of the senior team swim in the river as sort of an initiation for the season; this is one of the things that help the members bond with each other. There are races every week, including a trip to Oregon, Big Rock and the Fraser Valley Championships. Those who qualify would then move on to the B.C Championships, where the best runners from all over the province compete for a chance to return to their schools as a champion. Mr. Sparks, the head coach, is ready to help the members of the cross country team step up and continue to dominate like they have been doing so in the past years. Mr. Sparks likes to keep negativity out of the team as much as possible, so he gives each team their combined times after their races to see how they improve as the season progresses. Last year’s Cross Country season was conquered by the Walnut Grove Gators with the senior boys coming 15th, senior girls 4th, junior girls 3rd and the junior boys becoming B.C. Champions. These results were not just luck; the team worked hard and committed to improving throughout the season, winning Walnut Grove two of six banners. One of the many phenomenal runners on the team, Chelsea Borrowdale, had many great things to say about cross country including her favorite memory:
“when the whole team was standing on the side cheering [her] on so loudly. It’s the team mentality of cross country that makes it so much fun” – Chelsea Borrowdale
Paul Buckingham, an astounding runner who placed 14th last year at the B.C. Championships and one of the six members ofthe junior boys’ team that placed first says that
“[his] goal for this year is to come in the top ten at the B.C. Championships.” – Paul Buckingham
Paul also stated that “[his] favourite part about cross country is finishing a hard race or practice”, proving just how dedicated all the members of the team are to cross country. Samantha Matthewman, a runner to watch out for says that her goal is to
“beat [her] previous best race time/placement from last season.”- Sam Matthewman
These three outstanding runners all have the same thing in common; they train hard, stay positive, and have fun. Many people will be watching for Walnut Grove to continue on their streak and with such an amazing team, it is definitely going to be a season to keep your eye on.