EPG JH Cross Country Runners Head to State
The Class 2A State Finals will be Saturday, October 18th at Maxwell Park in Normal. The gun will fire at 11:00am for the Girls race (Titan Girls team in Box #7) and 11:45am for the Boys race (EPG’s Sean Supan in Box #20).
XC Girls Team Advances to State Finals!
[OCTOBER 11, 2014] – The IESA Class 2A Cross Country Sectional Meet Saturday at Oak Ridge Park in Washington provided plenty of drama with 180 runners competing for a chance to run on October 18th. One of the most remarkable stories of the day was undoubtedly a determined Titan team running the race of their lives to beat the odds and advance to the State Finals.
On a cool sunny morning, 13 of the toughest cross country teams in central Illinois were set to race with a purpose. Only 3 Girls teams and 3 Boys teams would qualify for the upcoming State Championships, along with 5 individual girls and 5 individual boys. There were smiles and pictures, cheers and hugs, but also a focus and intensity that comes only with an IESA state series event. For most competitors, it would be their last race of the season.
The Titan girls were called to the line at 10:00am. Dunlap Middle School is one of the best teams in the state and was certain to place first. That left only two team spots up for grabs, and it would surely be a battle among many teams – Metamora, Olympia, Washington Middle, Olympia, Germantown Hills, Dunlap Valley, Eureka, and El Paso-Gridley had all traded wins and losses over the course of the regular season, with EPG maintaining the slimmest of victories over all of these rivals at the recent Dunlap Invitational and Walt Dare Classic. However, the Titans would be missing their #3 runner due to a lingering injury sustained in P.E. class, which would make it a monumental challenge for the Titans to contend for a top 3 placing. In addition, two of EPG’s alternate runners were unavailable. Nevertheless, the girls had trained with passion all season, had prepared mentally and physically for this race, and simply refused to give up on their dreams.
Cate Atkins (12.23) ran the best race of her life. She had visualized the entire race many times and set a goal of running 10 seconds better than her previous 12.33 PR. And that’s exactly what she did. Her 5th place finish led the Titans. Atkins commented after the race, “There was so much adrenaline on race day – a day we had all been anticipating doing our best.”