Michael finishes 29th at State, men finish 7th

Boucing back from earlier season injuries, senior Mackenzie Michael finished 29th at the state cross country meet in Fort Dodge on Saturday, Nov. 2. At top, junior Cooper Olsen finished 104th individually with a time of 18:30 in the event.

At the state cross country meet, Saturday, Nov. 2, senior Mackenzie Michael took 29th place out of the 126 girls running that morning.

The chilly Iowa breeze didn’t make it easy for the runner, but because it was her last race, Michael wanted to end the season on a high note. “I knew it was my last high school race ever so I really wanted to lay it all on the line and have a really good, strong race,” Michael said.

Injured for most of the season, Michael focused hard on taking care of her body the best she could so she could run when it really mattered. Michael said the healing process has been difficult, so to see these postseason results has been gratifying. “It’s really been a lot of off and on. Sometimes I’m healthy and other times I would be so unhealthy to the point where I couldn’t run, so I’m just happy I finished strong,” Michael said.

Michael was the only runner representing the women’s cross country team last Saturday, and although it’s been this way before, Michael said it’s strange not having the company of her team. “It was odd. I mean last year we only had me and another girl run, so I guess it wasn’t much different, but it was still weird not to have my team there,” Michael said.

Even though her team wasn’t running with her, Michael was able to rely on the attendance of her friends, family and teammates while she ran. “It was so amazing. It made me so happy to have such a great support system and just so many people cheering me on,” Michael said.

Michael couldn’t have crossed the finish line or even gotten to the state meet without a little help along the way. Michael said it wasn’t a single person who contributed the most to her success, but rather a collective effort from multiple people.

“I just think my team as a whole and you know all the physical therapists and chiropractors that helped me through and just fixed me,” Michael said. Throughout the course of the season, Michael experienced a back, hamstring, and foot injury.

Now that the cross country season has concluded, Michael will take a few weeks of rest before getting back to work in the off-season. Michael plans on swimming before getting back into weightlifting with her training for track.

“I know college is gonna be a lot more intense but at the same time I’ll get a lot better,” Michael said. Michael plans on attending Oklahoma State University after graduation to participate in cross country and track.


Men’s State 

Cross Country

Team placed 7th

Eli Smith, 25th in 16:20

Tj Tomlyanovich, 33rd in 16:32

Joel Burris, 41st in 16:38

Brayden Burnett, 46th in 16:40 

Michael Goodenbour, 49th 

in 16:42

Alex Horstman, 50th in 16:43 

Cooper Olsen, 104 in 18:30

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