South Sound Conference Championships

So to be honest, I really don’t know where to start today. I have to say this turned out to be one of the best days I have ever had as a coach. I could not be more proud of this team, and to over share a little bit but shed a bunch of tears today as I watched the girls race, and interact with each other, today.

So here are some general notes from the race today. We had 30 girls race. 3 girls ran the fastest race of the season (SR) and 26, YES 26 girls run a lifetime Personal record (PR). That just doesn’t happen. This is such and amazing accomplishment by our ladies – I can’t say that I have ever had that happen as a coach – even when we get down to just varsity girls.

Normally I would just list out all the girls PRs but I think I would just get repetitive so gonna talk a little bit in broad strokes. (and save some of the information for the banquet) but anyway – We have been working on our positive energy and focusing on the positive things we have been doing this year after a number of frustrating races with bad races and tough courses. To start the day I knew we would be in great shape, just how well they prepared and how happy the girls were. I told them yesterday that I thought they were ready to do great things.

In the JV race, I had told Aven, Maria, and Emily to not be afraid to go to the front, they didn’t look like they believed me. Well after the first half mile I knew we were in for something special. Both Aven and Maria were in the top 10 overall and not backing down from anyone, but I couldn’t keep up cheering because there were just no gaps of our girls, it was just amazing – and I got a little emotional early in the race because they were running so well. So I ran to the next spot and I couldn’t beat half the girls to that spot so I jumped to the next spot I usually go to. Aven, Maria, Taylor and Emily had already passed. So I raced to the spot where the course kind of doubles back on itself. I say Aven and Maria coming down the hill in what I knew to be a great time for them. The girls just kept coming and every single girl was not just running fast but RACING the girls around them. ALL of them, not just the top girls but ALL the girls!!! I can’t say that this has always been true of our girls but today it was. I have to say the I cried a little when the top girls came racing by and then again when Morgan came flying by because I knew how much it meant to her to have a good race. Sarah came by and I remembered all she had to over come just to race after she hurt her knee earlier in the season and spent a big portion of the season in a knee brace, (tears) Then came the girls that didn’t have as many girls around them to run with but were still just busting it for great times!!!! And again I was overwhelmed when Sophie ran by me, being a senior and running for the last time, and she just gave me the look that, “ I got this coach!!” and sure enough she did. Then I finally get back to the tent and all the girls are screaming at me about how great their times were, (again choked up) There was even more great things, I wish I could recall them all and write them down. But anyway here are our PR’s today in the JV race:

Aven :10
Maria :16 BTW ran 24:57 as a freshman and ran 21:38 today
Tayler :22
Reagan 1:27
Kelsey :51
Alina 1:41 and she never ran a race in 24 minute range drop from 25’s all the down into the 23’s
Cara :57
Sarah 1:15 also totally skipped the 24’s
Skyler :27
Phoebe 1:31 never ran in the 26’s
Nancy 1:00
Izzie :58
Amanda :17
Annah 2:31!!!!!
Megan :27
Paloma 3:05!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Sophie :28
THAT IS 17 MINUTES AND 43 SECONDS OF PERSONAL RECORDS JUST TODAY!!!!! AND WE HAVEN’T EVEN TALKED ABOUT VARSITY YET……..

If we add on Season bests it takes the totals to 18:24!!!!!

So on to varsity – If you were there you saw the varsity girls get really nervous, I mean REALLY nervous. Since this is the group I work most with I knew they were ready, they just needed to believe that they were ready – had a few tears, not mine (yet) but as we got closer to the start of the race, I started asking the girls if they were ready, they of course gave the “of course, we are coach” response, but then one took a deep breathe and looked at me and said, “we got this” tears – mine this time.

The race started and by the time we got to the half mile mark I knew this was either going to be a GREAT day or we started WAY to fast and this was going to be a really tough last half of the race. Well, it was the first, wewere just as amazing as the JV girls today. Bella had set a goal to be league champ today, and made a valiant effort. She was able to bring away a strong 2nd place finish and a new PR. Naomi ran a great race and had her most aggressive race of the season, so far, finishing 5th, (Season best), Kallie filled out our podium finishers today with a 9th place finish (PR)

We had a little gap after that but then the flood gates opened and Lilly -18th, Shasta – 19th, Lexi 20th, Melissa 22nd and our 2 alternates for today Grace – 23rd and Marin 24th ALL finished with lifetime PR’s All of our girls, including our 2 alternates finished AHEAD of ALL other teams top 7 varsity girls.!!!! As crawled my way up to the finish line (getting tired by this time of the day – and maybe a little dehydrated) I about get tackled by Kallie who is so excited for her time, she couldn’t contain herself, then I see Naomi being the great leader she is waiting at the finish line for girls to finish the race so she can cheer them on. Shasta is got a grin from ear to ear and Lilly has a look of “I can’t believe I just did this” on her face. And Lexi, ran so hard she is having a hard time even standing up her legs are so tired. I finally find Bella, who is giving an interview to the paper, as she talks about her journey and teammates I swell with pride and joy for her and her teammates. (hopefully will be a great article in the paper tomorrow) Here are the PR’s for the varsity today

Bella :04
Kallie :27
Lilly : 50
Shasta :46
Lexi :55
Melissa :45
Grace :30
Marin :16

That’s 4:33 in PR’s today for a grand total of 22 minutes and 16 minutes of Lifetime personal bests. And if we had season best it comes to a grand total of 23:12!!!!!!

There were lots of hugs and lots of tears of happiness today!! I can’t express how proud I am of this amazing group of strong young women!! The next few weeks should be exciting as our varsity girls continue the quest to state!

Remember – anyone is welcome at practice all the way to the end. Same bat time same bat channel.

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