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Springfield girls cross country team improving

9/26/2013 - South Side Leader
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By Sean Patrick

SPRINGFIELD — Springfield High School girls cross country head coach Kevin Gorby said the biggest priority for the program is “to get a few more girls out for the team.”

“We, right now, have six girls on the cross country team on the girl’s side,” the first-year coach said. “One important factor is that they’ve had a few injuries, but not from this season. From last year’s program, some of the injuries have carried over into this season, and several girls are not able to run.”

According to the coach, the No. 1 runner on this year’s team so far has been junior Meghan Metko.

“Meghan’s best time this season [through Sept. 20] is 23 minutes and 15 seconds,” he said. “She just got done winning two races these past couple of weeks.”

The other runners on the team, Gorby said, are sophomore Holley Yeater and freshmen Jade Johnson, Angel Brown and Barbara Hoover.

“Holley’s best time is 25 minutes and 10 seconds,” he said. “Jade just broke the 29-minute mark for the 5K. Angel is right around 29 minutes and Barbara is right around 31 minutes. Barbara’s times have dropped immensely.”

With one junior and five underclassmen, Gorby said, each of the team’s athletes has been improving as they have gained experience.

“I couldn’t be happier about watching all of them get better and better every week,” he said. “I think that once we add more athletes on our team, that it will only improve us and give us more competition to fight for positions.”

The girls on this year’s team have shown “a lot of pride,” Gorby said.

“It’s one of the things that I have been most impressed with,” he said. “They’re out cheering for each other during races and getting together afterward and talking about how they can get other girls in the school interested in joining the program. It’s not a club mentality. They want to be good and they want to get better. They’ve been working really hard at getting everything going toward what they want to do. I’m actually very proud of their dedication to the sport. They are hard-nosed, blue-collar, gutsy kids who don’t complain. They just go about doing their jobs and giving it the best they’ve got.”

Gorby said he has a number of goals in mind for the team, but all of them start with continuing to get better every week.

“I would definitely like to see them improve for the [Portage Trail Conference] championships and knock off a few teams,” he said. “I would also like to see them continue to drop their overall times. My No. 1 goal is always improvement. I’d like to see 1 or 2 minutes dropped from the times of my top runners and 3 or 4 minutes dropped from my runners toward the back. There’s still room for improvement from them, and it’s going to come, because a lot of them don’t have a ton of distance background. A lot of this is new to them, and training-wise we are getting there. The future looks so bright for them, because they’ll all be back next year. I think we’re going to be very good.”

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