Last season, the girls cross country team placed fourth at regionals, allowing them to advance to sectionals. The team then went on to sectionals, only to come up short and in last place.
This season, the girls used the ups and downs of last season as a reminder to work to their fullest potential. Their goal became to perform better by not only making it to sectionals, but by placing higher than the previous season.
“One of our goals is to just be competitive and work as a team together,” said Kelly Delgado, junior. “[We want to] run together more closely in a pack, make sure our 1 to 5 split [running in a group] is closer together than it has been in the past. They haven’t been achieved yet, but we still have a few weeks until the season ends, so hopefully we get our girls running closer together.”
So far this season, the freshmen/sophomore team has placed tenth at the Palatine Invite and fourth at the Warren invite.
Several varsity members claim the varsity team has not yet reached the height of its talent and goals, but members hope to achieve more during the upcoming state series.
Junior Gemma Chavez stated that in her opinion, the main goal for everyone “is just to improve [their] time even if it’s just by a few seconds.”
“It’s what we all strive for, and we just try to put our best efforts into the race so that we can get better,” she said.
Beginning the state series, the NSC Championship took place on Saturday, Oct. 15. The girls team faced teams within the conference, including Libertyville, Lake Forest, Warren and Stevenson. With strong performances from Andrea Cordova, Clarissa Wienckowski, Claire Schoenfield, Jeanelle Jimenez, and Leslye Rodriguez, who all medaled, the frosh/soph team took third place, while the varsity team took fifth place. Cordova and Wienckowski both received All-Conference honors.
On Saturday, Oct. 22, the team placed fifth at regionals, therefore allowing them to advance to sectionals, which will take place on Saturday, Oct. 29.
Team members said they hope sophomores Cordova and Wienckowski place high enough at this event to make it down to state and represent MHS against the rest of the IHSA.
“[From the beginning of the season], sophomores Andrea Cordova and Clarissa Wienckowski were placing in the frosh/soph and varsity invites and running really strong for our team,” said Captain Sarah Ouimet, senior.
The team is using the young talent to not only finish off this season on a high note but to also prepare for the future. With young sophomores and freshmen on the varsity level, they can use the high level of training to step up their game for the next couple of years.
But to finish off this season, the team plans to do well in the state series and to send a few girls down to state. The team realizes they first must place high enough at regionals to make it to sectionals and then compete at sectionals with the hopes of making it to state.
“I think one of our team goals is to qualify for sectionals like we have in the past. The past couple of years we barely made it, so our goal this year is to run strong enough to place higher at regionals,” explained Ouimet. “Our team has a good shot of doing well, and I can’t wait to see how hard we can compete against the other schools.”