The Final Run: KD Cross Country Finals
December 7, 2015
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On November 5, 2015, King/Drew’s cross country team ran their final meet at Peck Park in San Pedro. All the runners, including Coach Flores, were looking forward to the finals. For seniors, it would be their final meet. Since September, Coach Flores has been training the team with vigorous exercises to prepare them for all the meets and especially for the finals.
The excitement of running in the finals was unfortunately short-lived for the girls JV team since they had to forfeit because the team was incomplete. Many girls were crushed upon hearing this since they trained hard and were really looking forward to their last meet of the season.
The runners that were able to run were not nervous. Upon their arrival at the park, there were many different schools which all seemed to be just as enthusiastic as King/Drew. Peck Park, the location in which the runners compete, may seem simple but in reality it is more difficult than what anyone may imagine. According to some runners, the entire course is three miles. It includes a very steep hill, which many of the runners consider to be the worst part of the course since many struggle to run up the hill.
The first group to run the final meet was the girls varsity team. All the girls started off running as a group but soon parted ways as they ran through the course. It was about 15 minutes that had passed and the first of the K/D girls to pass the finish line was Giselle Fernandez (junior), later followed by the rest of the girls. Fernandez ended the track with a time of 19 minutes and 49 seconds. Then the boys started to run, unlike the girls who started out together, the guys all went at separate speeds and came in at different times, with Christian Barrios (junior) coming in at 19 minutes and 45 seconds, having the fastest time out of all the runners.
The entire cross country team did really well and they all felt really proud of themselves because they tackled the “deadly” hill. But how else did the cross country team feel about their final run of the season? For the majority of the team, especially the sophomores, it was their first season on the cross country team. Being their first season, sophomores Angela Velasquez and Cindy Birrueta were asked why they liked being in cross country. Cindy replied by saying, “I like it because I feel like running releases stress and it is nice to have people motivate you.” Angela responded, “I like running in general and in the environment that I run, I relax.” The same girls were also asked what they liked most about this season. “I mainly liked the encouragement and support I got”, said Cindy while Angela said, “I really liked our team and the bond we had.”
For the seniors, this was officially their final run. Amanda Hernandez (senior) was asked upon her final meet and responded by saying, “I feel sad because I will no longer be running as a high school student, but as a college student.” When asked when was her least favorite moment she replied, “Practices were worst but I liked going to new practices in parks.”
Overall, the King Drew cross country team had a very fun and memorable season. Many would continue running, either in college or on the King/ Drew cross country team.