Successful cross country season foreshadows excellence in track season

Madeline Brisson, Sports Editor

The track team hopes to have a successful year as they gear up for the new season with a young team of a select few returners, along with additional talent coming from new varsity underclassman. Their first meet will take place on Feb. 16 at Katy High School.

“In order to be one of the strong teams in the district again,” senior Sam Wallace said, “We are going to have to work harder than ever. We have the natural talent; we just have to apply it to everything we do.”

This year a lot differs from last year, including the newcomers.

“We’re going to have a lot more younger guys on the team this year because we’ve only got about four seniors and compared to last year we had a lot more. A lot of people are new varsity this year.”

Top scorers like Wallace, who was an 800 meters district champion last year, will be back with hopes of making a state championship appearance individually. Other returning top scorers include seniors Daphne Cervantes and Samantha Kubiak, juniors Mitchell Pence and Emily Kech, as well as junior Karla Padron and sophomore Steven Nixon with pole vaulting.

“I expect this upcoming season to turn out well because there has been those same few people who have been on the team as long as I have and have shown their capability to compete,” Cervantes said. “Also, there are new people that have potential and add event variety to the team.”

With the inclusion of top competitors such as Katy in the district, Head Coach George Beasley still sees potential in his team to improve and overcome the teams overall inexperience.

“I believe in comparison with the district we will have some areas [where] we will be strong and others that we will have to improve in order to compete at the highest level,” Beasley said. “I am looking forward to the season and our athletes are working hard to improve their times, distances and heights this year.”

Padron believes that with the coaches’ efforts to bring the team together as a whole, results will be favorable.

“This year I see a lot more team unity,” Padron said. “The coaches are trying to get the team aspect of the sport because last year we didn’t have it as much. I used to think track was really individual but you really have to have a team backing you up.”

The cross country boys finished ninth at state in Nov. which leaves the team with high expectations for the distance events in track.

“I think our strengths this year will be that we have cross country runners that had a good season with the girls’ race having been moved up to a 5K and the guys made it to state,” Cervantes said. “The increase in distance made us realize that we can do so much more.”

According to Wallace, he proudly sports his maroon and white uniform at meets and school pride plays a part in his dedication to the team.

“Running for a school that has won two consecutive team state championships, everyone knows who you are,” Wallace said. “All the other teams you race are gunning for you and want nothing more than to beat you. When you don a CR jersey, you have to take into consideration what that means. You represent your school as well as the entire student body, and that means a lot to me.”