Girls cross country prioritizes hard work


Samantha Haney

At the beginning of the race at Living Word Church on Oct. 1, junior Natalie Barnard and senior Elissa Barnard are in the lead. Elissa placed 15th and Natalie placed 18th at the State Championship last year.

Penelope Proffitt, Staff Reporter

Coach: Jill Harmon

Last season recap: 3rd place at District Championship, 6th at State Championship

Captains: Seniors Elissa Barnard and Blair Lobdell, juniors Natalie Barnard and Ashley Rinkenberger

Current record for the season: 1st place at Fort Zumwalt North Meet, 3rd at Memphis, Tennessee Twilight Meet, 2nd Place and highest scoring Missouri team at Forest Park Invitational, 1st place at Festus Invitational, 2nd place by one point at Gans Creek Invitational, 2nd at the Dale Shepherd Invitational

Player Intel:

“The season has been really good. It started off really strong. Grace Tyson got a stress fracture and she’s our best runner, so that’s really hard, but we have done really well without her and are getting more confident,” Rinkenberger said.

“We try to stick together. In our workout groups, we almost always have a partner who’s in the same time range, so we just try to stick with them. When you feel yourself start to fall apart, just pick your form back up because that’s what is going to carry you through the race. Strategy wise, it’s just all the little basics like trying to get our sleep, eating enough and taking care of yourself while you feel things that are hurting,” Natalie said.

Coach Intel:

“They’re doing awesome this year. Every single meet that we have been at, we have placed in the top three [and] as a team we’ve always had at least two to three in the top five, if not more than that. We are running PR times. It’s super exciting this year, they are working super hard. We are taking a rest this week because we are going to try to run PR times for conference,” Harmon said.