On Friday, Aug. 25, the Maclay cross country team raced towards their first meet of the season. The meet was held at the Cecil Field in Jacksonville, Florida. The lady Marauders varsity cross country team got second place in the elite race. The boys cross country team placed 19th in the elite race. The junior varsity girls also ran in the varsity race and placed 22nd.
Among the varsity girls, sophomore Caroline Couch ran an 18:49 in the 5000 meter run, placing fourth.
“It felt really good placing fourth on Friday because almost everyone in the state was there out of all classifications,” Couch said. “ So I am for sure top 10 if not top five in the whole state which is a fantastic feeling.
Senior captain Gracie Koeppel ran a 19:20 in the 5000 meter placing 10th, and her sister sophomore Lillian Koeppel was not far behind her, running a 19:44 placing 24th.
“The thing that impressed me most was how hard everyone pushed themselves despite the extreme heat,”G. Koeppel said. “Everyone performed really well.”
Maclay’s top two on the boys side was David Barton, running a 17:25 in the 5000 meter run, and not far behind him was Logan Phipps running a 17:51 in the 5000 meter run.
“One of the biggest goals we have for the cross country team is to have every member of the boys team run under 18 minutes.” Captain Charles Rust said.
The team put in a lot of work to be as prepared as possible for this past meet. To prepare for meets, the team starts a week with some hard training days and then has some easier training towards the end of the week. The team also has team dinners to be more bonded as a group and ease some of the pre-meet stress.
With the season opening up, the team is already placing their goals for the season.
“I think our biggest goal for the season is to win the state championship,” G. Koeppel said. “We were super close last year, so hopefully this is our year.”