Cross country continues dominance despite loss of runners

Giorgio Cico

Both boys’ and girls’ cross country teams are off to an MCAL dominating start to the season with perfect league records so far.

Coach Laura Schmitt motivates the team before the October 3 meet. The meet was relocated from Tennessee Valley to Redwood because of the government shutdown.
Coach Laura Schmitt motivates the team before the October 3 meet. The meet was relocated from Tennessee Valley to Redwood because of the government shutdown.

Seniors Emma Gallagher and Julia Hansen have lead the team through a so far undefeated season. The team has also been boosted by freshman Glennis Murphy ran the 3.01 mile race with 20.09 last week at O’Hare Park.

“The team that you see in the results right now is very much different from the one you’ll see at state and at NCS,” said Hansen, team captain. “There are five varsity runners that are hurt right now, and that makes it so some freshmen are really stepping up.”

“They have a presence that is very unlike freshmen, and show up to the meets in only Redwood gear. They are on point all the time,” Hansen said.

After last season was capped off by an MCAL championship, the boys’ cross country team is looking at a different future this year after the loss of several runners.

Still, the boys’ team is enjoying the same undefeated record as the girls’, with the help of team captain Fred Huxham, who finished third in last year’s State, and sophomore Andy Ehrenberg.

After last season was capped off by an MCAL championship, the boys’ cross country team is looking at a different future this year after the loss of several runners—four who graduated and three who decided to not return this season.

“We had a trio of guys not come out and that sucks, obviously. I like all of them, and they were good runners.”

Despite the losses, Huxham explained that their absence won’t hurt the team significantly.

“To get to State, you have to score a certain amount of points at NCS. None of them actually scored points for our team at NCS [last year] , so ultimately we didn’t lose that much towards our overall goal,” Huxham said.

Huxham said the losses have helped some runners to step out of the shadows.

Senior Eric Bryan won his first league meet last week with a time of 17:16 at O’Hare Park.

“He’s always sort of been in the background, but this year he’s more at the front,” Huxham said.

As for individual goals, Huxham, who only started taking running seriously his freshman year, wants to build on his self-described “breakout” 2012 season, in which he won the Early Bird Invitational and finished fourth at the Stanford

Invitational, along with his third place finish at the state meet.

“Everybody who beat me last year is pretty much gone, besides one guy,” Huxham said. “The expectation is pretty much to win everything.”