CVU XC: Examining the season, looking to the future, keeping runners at the front of the pack

Mr. Isaac Cleveland

CVU boys and girls cross-country won with record breaking times last saturday during the NVAC District Championships in Swanton, Vermont. Tyler Marshall, the senior superstar of CVUHS boys cross country running, won during the 5k with an astounding new personal record: a 15:24.2 minute 5k time. He ran just under a five minute mile and beat his nearest competitor by a minute. Tyler Marshall shared that with this new personal record, he was even more ready for next weekends race. “It was a confidence booster,” he said, “not only for myself but also for my team.”CVU’s girls team was lead to the first place title by none other than our very own Sophia Gorman, Ella Whitman, and Jennifer Ireland, scoring 1st, 2nd, and 3rd in the competition. Gorman won with a 18:11.9 minute time and ran just under an impressive 6 minute mile.

However, even with these stunning times and multiple championship medals for both Gorman and Marshall, what will happen to their team as these two seniors leave for their college careers?

Marshall will be one of the five senior varsity runners graduating this coming spring. The girls varsity are only losing two out of their seven varsity runners.

Head coach Scott Bliss commented on the matter stating that the level of excellence of the boys in coming years “will be up to the returning runners.” He also noted that the girls still had a great group of core runners that could easily compete in the top races with more training. It really will be up to the boys’ team to train harder than ever to be able to reach the same level that Marshall established throughout his high school career.

Isaac Cleveland

Award-winning coach Scott Bliss, photo by Isaac Cleveland

 

To reach the same times that Marshall set, it is mainly about the focus of the runner and the mindset that the runners have during the races. Patrick Gooley, one of the seniors on the boys varsity team, shared what he thought about the mindset that a runner needs to have. “Every race is extremely painful so you have to be extremely mentally tough.”

For the new cross country runners in the program, this pain has become an everyday reality that needs to be met with the same mental toughness. To win next year’s races, our male runners have to be more than just mentally tough, they have to be able to push themselves farther than their known limit. Coach Bliss states that he tries to teach his runners one main lesson: “Do the very best you can do, today.”

The girls are more optimistic about the future of their cross country team. Sophia Gorman commented that their top ten runners are really strong meaning that there will still be a strong team base after two of the seniors leave.  Zoe Prue, a sophomore, shared with me when I asked her about the future of her team that “there are a lot of really good runners to fill the spots that are opening up.” Rosalie LaCroix, a junior, noted that they had “a lot of depth in the team” and that with “super supportive coaches” like Bliss, they would be able to accomplish many of their goals in the upcoming seasons.

Both teams are looking to qualify and place well in the Nike Cross Regionals Northeast; which, with our superstar runners, may become a reality. Once Marshall and Gorman leave for college, it will be interesting to see which of our talented runners will step up and lead the team to victory.

The standard has been set high and the dreams of our students are even higher. Our runners are ever increasing and with a supportive coaching staff, all of the goals they set are achievable.

I look forward to the new season and the success that our runners will bring.

Go Redhawks!

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