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Sports

Copley girls cross country coach says team has ‘bright future’

11/15/2012 - West Side Leader
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By Sean Patrick

COPLEY — First-year Copley High School girls cross country head coach John Roseman said the 2012 team was best described as “pretty young.”

“But that bodes well for the future,” he said. “We’re kind of building and I look for a lot of improvement. They’re young and they have a bright future.”

Roseman said there were three seniors on the team this season, led by Kate Sabin, who was selected to compete at the Summit/Stark all-star meet at Walsh University.

“She had a really good year. She’s really solid and a really hard worker,” the coach said. “She was one of my captains and she was a team leader — she really believed in the system. Kate was a pleasure to coach.”

The team’s other seniors were Melissa Gehring and Breanna Kiefer.

“Melissa was banged up most of the season, but she really stepped up and showed leadership — especially toward the end of the year,” Roseman said. “And Brianna was out there working every day.”

The team finished its dual meet slate with two wins and six losses. Copley finished in sixth place at the conference meet and in fifth place overall in the conference. And the team placed 10th at the district meet.

“Sydney Bailey qualified for the regional meet with a 23rd-place finish and a time of 20:43.8,” the coach said. “She placed 66th at the regional meet with a time of 21:11.9.”

Roseman said he is looking forward to watching the development of the sophomore runner.

“Sydney is a good worker for me,” he said. “She had a great race at the district meet, qualifying her for the regional meet. She made a big jump there. That was awesome to see. And then she came back at regionals and also ran very well. She’s going to be good. I’m excited to see what she’ll do over the next couple of years.”

According to Roseman, one factor that proved problematic for the team was an early season injury to junior Gabi Rodriguez.

“Gabi ended up with a back injury, and while she could run, she just wasn’t running the way she is capable of running,” the coach said. “It was after the second meet or so that it started bothering her, and we tried to back off on her and take care of it. But it just never really got better.”

Roseman said he’s looking forward to Rodriguez’s senior season.

“She had an awesome track season last year, and I think she ran very well at a preseason race,” he said. “She’s capable of great times, but she just got injured and that’s part of it.”

Now that he has one season under his belt as coach of the Copley girls cross country team, Roseman said next season should be an exciting one for the program.

“Part of this year was about the change to my way of doing things,” he said. “And now that they know what to expect, everyone is excited for next season.”

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