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Run away, run away

Photo by Rob Pollan
Photo by Rob Pollan

The South Side cross country teams are booming with success this season. With the boys and girls cross country teams running towards state they are putting in more time than usual and have not looked back yet.

With the boys top eight runners: Tucker Melles, Gus Whitman, Keyan Lunders, Darrien Case, Tristen McCoy, Alex Thurston, Isaac Friedmen, Jordan Crawford and Alex Thurston they are making an example of how South takes pride in their cross country teams with times under six minute miles headed towards their personal bests.

“The team is doing a lot better than the coaches expected” said Alex Thurston. The boys look to continue their success throughout the rest of the season.

The girls team takes their spirit for running with a whole new idea. Every Friday they have theme practices such a swearing their ponytails on top of their heads.

“It inspires all 37 of the girls by making practices fun each week so just running 4-7 miles does not get boring,” said Olivia Ortiz.

Meridith Masters said, “I joined the team to get in shape but also to meet a lot more people and have a good time which is what cross country is all about.”

With the girls getting along they show how they take cross country very seriously.  Getting up  on Wednesday mornings is dedication and most of other athletes would not want to get up that early to just run.

The top seven runners for the girls are not only leading by example of times under seven minutes but they “are inspiring the underclassmen to get better every day” said Meridith Masters, junior.

Those girls are Jasmine Crawford, Lexi Maddox, Erica Guzman, Erin Stump, Madi Blinzler, Griffin Burri, Kallen Mazeitis, Astrid Reynoso, Nicole Gardner, and Riley Nelson and they are looking forward towards their conference meet.

The boys and girls teams are running towards the end of their seasons but they are not forgetting about the family atmosphere they have.

“Family factor is important, because it gets everyone involved an motivates most of the runners” said Gus Whitman, junior.

When they are not running together they are hanging out and doing other activities outside of school such as their end of the year sleepovers. The guys have Extravamanza and the girls is called Extravaganza. It consists of sleeping over at someone’s house and staying up all night doing whatever they want.

South looks forward seeing all the runners doing their best to make it to state and improve on their personal and team records.


Megan Hughes is in her third year as publications adviser at Park Hill South High School. She currently advises the View newsmagazine, South Paw yearbook and LitMag.