Smiling Their Way to the Finish Line!
November 8, 2013
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The co-ed Cross Country team at King/Drew is doing great!
Their last few meets, taking place at Peck Park on October 17th, 24th, and 31st were definitely impressive considering the circumstances.
King/Drew’s Cross Country team consists of 11 boys and 17 girls with Ms. Flores as their fabulous coach. The boys team captain is Senior, Jerome Gaines. He is not the fastest, but has the best leadership skills and he’s a team player. He says that although he isn’t the fastest on the team, he does what he does for the better of his team.
Sophomore, Naidelyn Sanchez, is the team captain for the girls Cross Country team. She is the fastest runner on the girls side, running her 3 miles in only 27 minutes. When asked how it felt being a sophomore and the team captain of a group of girls (a majority of them being older than her) she humbly stated, “I was nervous because I didn’t know how to control them, but things got better to handle. They didn’t give me any trouble and they’re a very cooperative group of girls.”
It’s been said that San Pedro High School is one of the hardest schools to beat in almost every sport. However, in Cross Country, they most DEFINITELY have an advantage. Their team runs at Peck Park for their practices. They get a leg up by being able to run over the hills and the same amount of miles as in a meet, giving them an advantage against basically every school– especially King/Drew since our runners only have flat ground to run on as a practice. San Pedro even has a runner who can complete the entire 3 miles at only 16:00 minutes! This doesn’t, however, mean that we will always lose to them. Coach Flores says our team went downtown once to practice running over hills, but lack of transportation was a huge factor in why only 3 people showed up to that practice. She also says she plans on doing a parent outreach so that the parents get more involved in the meets and practices. She hopes this will expand the amount of transportation the team gains. With more teammates showing up to the practices, the team as a whole will have the opportunity to be more competitive.
The girls took off at precisely 2:45 p.m. to run their 3 miles. As they jogged, the boys cheered them on and every girl had a smile on their face. I was surprised to see so many girls smiling as they ran. I, personally, hate running, so I would not be the one to smile passing by. I’d look more like I’d want to jump off a cliff.
The boys took off at exactly 3:30 p.m. , also smiling, as they ran pass the girls cheered them on, but some looked more serious than others. All the boys crossed the finish mark within the same 4 minutes, which I found quite impressive.
It was nothing less than heart warming to hear Jorge Pulido tell Coach Flores, “I’m going to get you the championship trophy by my senior year Coach. I swear on my life I will!” On November 7, 2013, hopefully Jorge will fulfill his promise at the last Cross Country meet. The final 7 girls continuing to the last Cross Country meet are Mellysa Armstrong, Ronneesha Billups, Jannira Cuapio, Almadelia Narcisco, Kimberly Navas, Naidelyn Sanchez, and Jasmine Williams. The final boys going on are Christian Barrios, Naji Daoud, Jerome Gaines, Javier Jaime, Jorge Pulido, Francisco Rodriguez, and Daniel Sanchez. Best of luck to these 14 valuable, passionate runners!
Let’s Go King/Drew sports!