Off to a Running Start

Allison Muzzy, Editor, Reporter

The cross country team has seen success in the beginning of their season with many athletes being included on the 24 Runners to Watch in 2021 list from the Leavenworth Times. 

This season also is the last one for the four returning seniors; Michael Howell, Ryan Corrigan, Kathleen Hoang, and Allison Muzzy, who are this year’s team captains. 

“This senior year I just want to improve and get faster with each race that goes by. I know that if I get pushing through it, our last few races will be better.” says Kathleen Hoang. 

The first meet of the season was a muddy, but exciting one against Tonganoxie at the Leavenworth Fairgrounds. The girls had four runners in the top ten, with Sophomore Anya Anderson getting second. On the boys side, Lansing had three boys in the top five, winning the dual. However, following this race many runners were unsatisfied with their performance.

“We had a rocky start, but its slowly progressing into a better turn of events. I think we’re all improving, on our times as well. I’m just looking forward to seeing us all improve and breaking the goal of sub-16.” Michael Howell explains. 

Improvement is many runners’ focus, and following the first meet the runners hit the next one with determination. The runners focused on speed workouts, hills, and endurance. 

This hard work paid off and the almost all runners improved their time at the meet at Kanza Park in Topeka. Anya Anderson took 11th place with a time of 21:18. The girls improved their times and ran hard against many other schools, taking 4th getting a team score of 114. 

The boys had many runners in the top twenty, with Sophomore Jackson Steger taking 3rd place with a time of 16:49. The boys took first place at the meet with a score of 40. 

The third meet of the season was held at Wyandotte County Park and the team saw more successes as well. On the varsity girls side, Anya Anderson took eighth place, and Senior Allison Muzzy took 16th. The varsity girls improved their team score taking 5th with 112 points. 

The boys ran hard with Senior Michael Howell taking first place with a time of 16:49. Sophomore Jacob Mitchell took 5th place in the junior varsity division with a time of 19:28. The varsity boys took 2nd with a total of 53 points. 

The hard work of these runners gave them recognition with 5 runners making the list of the 20 Runners to Watch in 2021. The runners recognized are as follows:

  • Michael Howell, Senior
  • Allison Muzzy, Senior
  • Niklas Schintgen, Junior
  • Anya Anderson, Sophomore
  • Jackson Steger, Sophomore

“I think cross country is a really fun sport for anybody, if you’re fast, if you’re slow, because not only does it keep you in shape and is fairly a easy concept, but as a team we bond really well with each, since we share a lot of similar experiences.” shares Junior Hannah Platt. 

The runners are gearing up for one of the biggest meets of the season, at the Rim Rock course in Lawrence, this Saturday September 25th.