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Cross Country Heads to Districts

Delaney Smith l Feature Editor

Taking place tomorrow, Saturday, Oct. 29, cross country team members will be competing at the district meet at Big Spring High School, the second stage of their postseason.

On Tuesday, Oct. 18 the top eight athletes from all teams in the Lancaster-Lebanon League competed at the leagues meet where both Cedar Crest teams qualified for Districts. The teams will be running their top seven runners at Districts with hopes of, from there, qualifying for States, which will take place the following Saturday.

The girls’ team placed second at the League meet while the boys’ team placed sixth. There has been much improvement within the teams so far throughout the season, so it is no surprise that they both qualified to participate in Districts.

“Both teams are getting more and more comfortable executing their roles,” said head coach Brandon Risser. “On the girls’ side, that meant newcomers learning how to race upfront for the team. On the boys’ side, our top runners had to learn to race like front runners.”

The Falcons have worked hard all season to get to this point and are looking forward to the upcoming competition.

“I hope to put forth a hard effort and just execute the race with a strong mindset,” said senior captain Grace Tadajweski. “I think that our team has an awesome opportunity to push ourselves, and see what we can do, so I am eager to see how we do at Districts.”

Part of the girls’ team’s high finishing place at Leagues was due to freshman Eliana Schneider who placed fourth overall. In addition to Schneider, Tadajweski, junior Lizzie Lowe, sophomore Audrey Fugate and senior Jillian Tobias all contributed to the Falcons’ final score of 107 team points with Schneider, Tadajweski, and Lowe medaling.

“I’m very excited [for Districts] because it will be my last time on the Districts course,” said captain Tobias. “I think the girls’ team is going to place higher than before in Districts, and I think we have a chance of qualifying for states.”

On the boys’ team, junior Ben Causak also showed great improvement from his performance at Leagues last year where he placed 47th. This season, Causak placed 13th and medaled.

“I am really looking forward to competing at Districts both as a team and an individual,” said senior captain Owen Sparks. “We lost some decent runners at graduation this year, and a lot of people counted our team out on account of that, but I think we have proved all of their doubts wrong. Districts will be another chance for these guys to go out and show off the results of the dedicated training they have put in all season.”

Along with seeing growth in the entire team, individual runners have also seen growth in themselves as athletes.

“Over the course of this season, I have improved as a runner both mentally and physically,” said senior captain Sarah Durning. “Consistently training alongside my friends has allowed me to have a more positive mindset and be a more competitive runner during meets. Additionally, the workouts that our coaches give us are individualized which allows everyone to improve in a way that best fits them.”

The team is prepared to give it their all at Districts and leave everything on the course. However, no matter the outcome, Districts will be an amazing opportunity to continue building a bond between the teammates.

“I am looking forward to it,” said senior captain Kyle Rauchut. “This is my first year competing at Leagues and Districts, so I can’t wait to compete with the teammates that have given me such an amazing season.”

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