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Run to Dance!

posted Oct 3, 2017, 9:16 AM by David Tapp

By: Keith Walder

Over the river and through the woods to the finish line they go. On Tuesday, Sept. 26, the Eureka High School Cross Country team made the short trip to El-Paso for the El-Paso Gridley (EPG) Invite at the Furrow Family Farm.

As the athletes run the course at EPG, they navigate Panther Creek four times as well as running up and down several hills, including a tough finish, running up a steep hill. To add to the difficult course, it was an abnormally hot day, with temperatures reaching 91 degrees; the girls race started at 4:15 p.m. at a smoldering 88 degrees. On top of everything, a combine was harvesting beans in a nearby field, kicking up dust everywhere.

The girls placed third overall with top 20 finishers of junior Emma Argo (1st), freshman Alexi Fogo (6th) and junior Lexi Grober (8th). When asked about her thoughts on the meet and being meet champion, Emma said, “I thought the meet went well. My favorite part was seeing my other teammates run well and hearing the stories of how their race experiences went. Winning it was my goal so I was glad to accomplish that.”

The boys also finished third overall with two top 20 finishers consisting of junior Kyle Johnson (9th) and freshman Mitchell Danner (15th). When asked about what he would most remember from the EPG Invite senior Don McFarlin said, “How much fun it is! The course is great, there’s always music playing, and everyone there is having fun.”

Top finishers in the open race for the Hornets were junior Kurt Hinrichsen (11th) and sophomore Luke Albertson (12th).

After all the races had concluded, athletes, coaches, and parents gathered in the awards area. The awards ceremony is more like a high school dance with awards mixed in. Athletes dance, sing, and chat while waiting for awards to start. New this year, they had a coach dance off. The athletes laughed and took videos as the coaches danced. When asked about dancing, Head Coach Olivia Morris said, “They didn't play a good song. The competition was not what we (Assistant Coach Julia Leong) were expecting.”

The girls and boys cross country teams head to the Prairie Central Invite on Oct. 7; then the Hornets host the Eureka Invite on Oct. 14 before kicking off the postseason at home on Oct. 21.