Cross Country Runners Off to Strong Start
by Alba Najera
Karen Burrows, grade school principal, cross country coach, and track coach, is always on a tight schedule. She loves running and has been coaching cross country for six years. Cross country running is a sport where races are held in open-air usually over grass or dirt. The thing she likes about cross country is that it’s a great activity for kids. Not only is there a sense of teamwork and camaraderie, she thinks it’s great that it is still an individual sport. Kids can run their own race and work to improve their own time, so you don’t really need a team to be successful.
Mrs. Burrows’s goals and expectations for this year are to see all of her runners improve throughout the season. She also thinks that her junior high boys have a chance to be competitive as a team at the league meet in October. Mrs. Burrows would like to see her team pick up some league medals as individuals and as a team.
This year the team has only one high school runner, as most high school students involved in cross country have graduated. Mrs. Burrows says it’s tough to lose the leadership of her older runners, but it is great to see the energy and enthusiasm from her younger runners. She is very much looking forward to when her junior high runners are in high school.
Last year, Covid really affected the cross country runners. All but one of her runners missed at least one meet because of Covid, and several missed more than one meet. They missed a lot of practice due to quarantine and isolation as well. Mrs. Burrows is really hoping that doesn’t happen again this year. She hopes to keep everyone well and able to practice and compete. Mrs. Burrows has a very young team, and she is very excited to watch them grow and develop.
This year's cross country team consists freshman Morgan Pendergraft; 8th graders Katelynne Sisk and Xander Garcia; 7th grader Edgar Najera; and 6th graders Izaak Garcia, Kolt Anthony, Hayden Pendergraft and Eathan Hernandez.
At Meade, Izaak Garcia placed 1st, Eathan Escarsega 2nd, Hayden Pendergraft 4th, Kolt Anthony 6th, and Edgar Najera 11th in their respective divisions. Morgan Pendergraft’s race was suspended due to lightning.
At Liberal, Xander Gracia placed 1st in the 8th-grade division while Izaak Garcia placed 2nd, Eathan Hernandez placed 8th, and Edgar Najera placed 10th in the 7th grade division.