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Hay Bales? Cross Country Takes on Final League Meet

November 1, 2016

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SDA’s cross country runners approached the final league meet of the season on Friday, the last meet for some seniors. The course was run at La Costa Valley Fields, where competitors raced through grassy fields while taking part in an old European tradition: jumping hay bales.

For many runners, the new course served as a challenge, especially with the addition of the hay bales, which tested their endurance in a new and unfamiliar way.

“[The hardest part of the race was] the hay bales because they were kind of of fun to hurdle over at first but then your legs kind of felt tired at the end. It was hard not tripping,” senior Natalie Haghani said.

Yet, SDA’s runners used their own effective methods to stay focused and motivated throughout the race.

“It gets me going… my teammates cheering me on and Gordy reminding me ‘race fast and go your hardest and don’t leave anything in the tank because you can tap into your full potential,’” said Sarah Lavake, junior.

Lavake placed first for the SDA girls with a time of 20.40 minutes for 3.04 miles, placing 25th overall. Leading the pack for SDA boys was junior Connor Oldham who finished with a time of 17.54 minutes, 31st overall.

For some seniors, Friday was the last Cross Country race of their high school career.

“I’ll definitely miss the team spirit in the long runs and just doing it all together,” senior Ray Mosko said. “It doesn’t matter what your times are; everyone is just there for each other and it’s a lot of fun.”

“[Before the race,] we were out doing striders and getting our legs warmed up, giving each other advice since it was the last meet for some seniors,” Oldham said. “We were telling them, ‘Go all out. It’s your last meet. Don’t leave anything behind.’”

Seniors felt sentimental about their last meet.

“It was my last race of senior year, I wanted to go full out,” Haghani said. “[This cross country season,] I wanted to keep building on my times, bringing them down and down from previous years and I think I’ve done that… It was a good end to the season.”

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