Girls Cross Country Dominate Rudy Skorupa Invite

Brooke Follrad, Web Content Editor in Chief

The girls JV meet begins with the noise of the gun. Lake Central’s start did not falter.
Amanda Spanier (11) finishes her second lap of the course. She has been working on dropping her times.
Natalie Kransky (11) turns the corner on her second lap. She maintained her lead against Valparaiso.
The girls move as one pack. Coach Amanda Pritt praised them for how well they followed each other’s movements.
Khaila Freitag (12) prepares to cross the finish line. She kept a strong pace through the end.

 On Aug. 28th,the girls cross country team hosted the Rudy Skorupa Invite. The schools that attended were Lake Central, Munster, Portage, Illiana Christian, Valparaiso, Highland, LaPorte and Crown Point. Lake Central won the invite. Our scores remained close with Valparaiso. The final score was Lake Central 29 and Valparaiso at 70. 

   “To grow the team’s strength, we do a lot of hill repeats, speed workouts, and we will really try to help the girl’s mentally prepare. We tend to visualize before our Friday morning practices. We do this for about 5 minutes. We tell them to think about the upcoming course and who they will be running with, who they will be passing at what point in the course. We do a lot of not only physical training, but mental as well,” Pritt said.

  Before the meet began, both Varsity and JV warmed up and prepared with the course in mind. The meet began an hour earlier than originally planned due to the heat. With this in their heads, the teams prepared mentally and physically. The crowd began to line up on the outside of the course.

   “The meet went very well. The girls ended up surpassing our expectations by running in such a tight pack. They always run in a pack, but once one person moved, the rest moved with them. Since they did that, the only reason why we won was because our pack got in front of Valparaiso’s pack,” Pritt said.

   Crowds of parents, friends and teammates cheered on all teams. As the girls completed each lap, they stayed close together moving as one. When the girls dispersed from the course to turn towards the finish line, supporters cheered on the runners.

   “For me personally, I think the season is going okay. I do support the girls, even if you’re not top Varsity. It is still an amazing community to be a part of. The season overall is doing amazing. Lake Central is very good for our state, so I think if the girls just stay mentally tough and support each other, we will go really far,” Kimberly Hestermann (12) said.

   Cross country is a mental and physical sport. All year long, the girls run to stay active. For their mentality, they visualize themselves in the race. Both JV and Varsity have won the two invites previous to this one.

   “I really want to make the postseason this year and be an alternate. I think that I am number 11 on the team, so I think I’ll make it. I want to get my times into the 21’s,” Amanda Spanier (11) said.

   Along with the support and strengthening, the girls become more than a team. According to Spanier, Hestermann and Pritt: cross country is a sport that creates family. Make sure to come support and cheer on our girls at their next meet!

   “I was a runner in high school and I really enjoyed being a part of a family. The whole family aspect of it just made me feel like we could have people and teammates belong somewhere. Even if things weren’t going right in the outside world, at least they could have someone to go to and lean on. That has always been what cross country has been. We are like a family,” Pritt said.