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A Good Year for Arrowhead Cross Country

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Arrowhead’s Girls and Boys Cross Country teams both made it to state this year, the girls took home first place and the boys got 4th. Senior Steve Kelly and junior Maggie Dawes both were at the state meet at The Ridges Country Club in Wisconsin Rapids. Though both teams run at the same course, the boys run a 5K and the girls run a 4K.
Dawes said it was a great season but for Kelly things didn’t start so smooth.
“I had some struggles early on with asthma and allergies which caused me to have problems with my lungs. I even had to go the hospital after two of my races. I had better races late on in the season though,” said Kelly.
According to both Dawes and Kelly, their coaches were great at preparing them for state. For Kelly he said that his coaches, Mike Mulrooney, Mike Ray, and Mark Johnson really helped.
Kelly says, “They are easily the best coaches in the state. They always know how to train us in preparation for the state meet. The workouts and meetings are specifically designed so that we are mentally and physically prepared to run our best at state.”
Dawes says, “Our coaches (coach Brauer, Kaczor and Hayes) are very experienced coaches and are really attentive to whether we are having a good or bad day or if we’re nervous for a race. So that was really helpful when going to the state meet because they helped us deal with our nerves.”
To make it all the way to state, both the boys and girls teams went through 10 weeks of training. To qualify as a team, they had to place top two in their sectionals. The boys took home 1st and so did the girls in their respective sectional meets.
Both teams took seven members to run at state and brought additional team members as alternates and in the girl’s case to cheer them on.
Dawes says, “The state course is one of the more difficult courses that we run during the year because there are multiple tough hills that can take a lot of energy out of you.”
This race celebrated the 100 year anniversary and according to Dawes, “I think there was a lot of extra excitement and spectators because it was the 100th anniversary but most people treated it like any other state meet.”
Kelly says “There was a big pasta party dinner the night before for the athletes and coaches. In attendance were some nationally recognized runners from Wisconsin. These runners were also at the meet and handed out medals. There were special medals for teams and individuals in the shape of the 100th anniversary logo. The number that runners pin on their jerseys also had the logo.”
During the meet Kelly says “I didn’t do as well as I hoped at state. I had been running well up until state when I had some issues with my lungs again. It seemed to act up at the worst possible time for me, but I still enjoyed the experience.”
Though Kelly suffered some medical issues, Dawes ended up placing 50th in the state out of about 170. Overall Arrowhead was represented yet again and victories were brought home.

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