Runners cram three races into five days
GENEVA—It’s the kind of schedule only a runner could love.
The Gothenburg cross country team will compete Saturday, Monday and Thursday in the week to come, all in preparation for the three biggest races of the season.
“It seems like we just got the season started and we’re already coming up on the conference meet,” said coach Steve Reeves.
It’s a grueling schedule but Reeves said Swede runners have embraced it, almost looking forward to it.
“We’re just trying to get better,” Reeves said. “Competition is good.”
The Swedes ran well at the Fillmore Central Invite at Geneva on Thursday with the girls finishing fourth and the boys seventh.
“We made some good improvement,” Reeves said. “I thought we might have even more success against those eastern teams because of the caliber of runners we go up against every week in this part of the state.”
Gothenburg’s girls saw yet another runner leading the way this week as freshman Jennifer Maline was the first Swede to cross the finish in 16:31.71. She earned a medal in 20th place.
Fellow freshman Destiny McVay was second for the Swedes in 16:37.72.
“We’ve had three different leaders in four races,” Reeves said. “The girls don’t care who is first and who is sixth. Their camaraderie and competition between them only makes the team better.”
All of the girls, from the two freshmen to the seniors, believe they are capable of competing for medals, he said.
“This is a really good group of girls,” Reeves said. “They work hard and the younger kids are beginning to realize what the races are all about.”
On the boys side of things, the Swedes continue to move forward, Reeves said.
“Alex (Spencer) and Aaron (Collins) work hard in practice and compete hard on the course,” he said. “And we saw some progress from Seth (Eg-gleston) too. He’s been battling some injuries.”
Spencer earned a medal in 16th place.
“I ran three freshman boys on varsity this week,” Reeves said of Bryce Kowalewski, Mathiel Martinez and Dylan France. “It’s hard for freshmen to compete with those older kids. Experience is definitely a factor.”
But what Reeves is focused on is the team getting better and he’s seen that happen.
“I think we’re a little farther ahead than where I expected us to be at this time,” he said.
Gothenburg travels to Minden on Saturday. The meet is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m.
Start time for Monday’s meet in Kearney is 2 p.m. for the girls and 3 p.m. for boys.