Sore calves and sweaty shirts. Overwhelming feelings of exhaustion along with the desire to drink twenty Gatorades at once. These are all side effects of running several miles. These are all too familiar to the runners on Dominican’s Cross Country team.
Dominican’s Cross Country runners have been hard at work preparing for their season by training since early this summer.
Their strenuous preparations paid off at the Christian Brothers Invitational in Abita Springs on Sep. 15 when Dominican placed third overall. Freshman Kelsey Major placed third in the girls’ varsity race with a time of 19:14.44.
“It was only our second race this season,” said coach Ms. Ashlyn Ciolino (’07). “The girls ran well. We had a few personal records, but it’s still early in the season and there’s room to improve.”
Later on in September, at the St. Joseph’s Academy Invitational in Baton Rouge, Dominican’s top seven varsity runners placed fifth with Molly Alexander and Sophie Dauterive beating their personal records of 21:02 and 21:04, respectively.
To prepare for the season, the team began practicing in early June. Rising at 6 AM during summer vacation, they trained at the Lakefront to improve upon their speed and stamina.
“During practices, we run shorter distances in less time to work on increasing our speed,” said senior Lizzy Bourg, co-captain of the varsity team.
Runners also have individual workouts tailored to each of their needs in athletic PE class. This regimen helps them improve upon their own personal weaknesses and help heal any injuries they may have.
“The difficult practices and workouts are worth it in the long run because they help our performance at meets,” said junior Erin Sequeira.
The training is not the only thing that has helped the runners improve this season. “The team chemistry is very strong among our girls,” said coach Mrs. Nicky Wood. “They’ve all helped each other mature and appreciate that the hard work they put in helps them succeed.”
The varsity team is motivated to achieve their personal and team goals of placing high in the state meet. “The team is strong this year,” said Bourg. “Our goal is to get on the infield at state, and with the way our team has been working together, we are hopeful to bring a win home for Dominican this season.”
- Natalie Rodriguez-Ema