Varsity Cross Country Makes IHS Proud

Ashlesha Mishra

Saturday, Sept. 25 marked the Bellevue Invite meet for the Issaquah High Varsity Cross Country team at the Lake Sammamish State Park. The team consisted of talented runners representing IHS against several other teams. The team had worked extremely hard and felt prepared to go into the runs. Junior runner Avni Doshi states, “We prepare for the meet through our practices and warm-ups. We have practice six days a week, one of which is a Saturday practice during which we do track workouts that the coaches have tailored to be specific to each player, which has helped the whole team significantly. For warm-ups, we usually try to jog part of the course and do dynamics.” Intense conditioning throughout the first few weeks of school and in the summer has prepped the athletes well for the win. Junior Anna Jensen, another Varsity team runner, claims that as this was their first invitational meet of the season, many runners were nervous but all thrived, attaining outstanding results in the end.

Overall, the meet turned out to be great for the Issaquah runners. Despite it being the first big event, many runners created personal records and had exceptional results. The main coach of the team, Coach Liza Rickey, said that the team had dedicated significant amounts of time over the summer to “do a lot of little things that make a big difference like strength training, drills, hydration, nutrition, and rest. We prepare for races by simulating starts, finishes, and visualizing the race.” She was very proud of the outcome of the event and amazed at the impressive times. She stated, “The team did amazing from our top varsity runners to our new freshman runners. We had over 50 runners get their best times and we won 4 of the divisions (freshman boys, sophomore boys, junior/senior boys, freshman/sophomore girls). Two of the standout races came from some of our freshmen. Riley Eberhardt had a breakout race with a third place finish out of 240 runners and a 3-minute improvement on her time! Connor Rickey is another freshman that ran a perfect race from start to finish. He placed second in his varsity flight with a very strong finish and an improvement of over a minute on his time. He is one of the fastest freshmen in the state.”

As Jensen stated, “I think we are looking good this season and are striving to make it to state and place well.” The Varsity Cross Country team has definitely made Issaquah High proud this weekend and it is exciting to see what all they accomplish throughout the rest of their season this year!