Collins Middle School has settled in for its first-ever year of competitive cross country, and coach Joe Lavell says the program is off to a good start.
“It was a little tough getting them all together (at first),” Lavell said, “but they’ve taken to it very well.”
Seventeen boys and girls are taking part in the sport this year. Some have been training a little longer than others, and Lavell said new runners are still expressing interest.
“And they’re showing results,” he said of the progress displayed.
The Little Devils began competition at last week’s Oak Hill Invitational and followed that up by participating in Tuesday’s Battle Run Invitational.
At the Battle Run event, Taylor Wills led the Collins girls finishers with a 22nd-place finish with a time of 14 minutes, 59.52 seconds for a 3-kilometer course. Other female finishers included: Madison Elkin, 41, 17:14.46; Faith Bigelow, 45, 17:56.99; Emma Hines, 46, 17:59:08; Destiny Minor, 52, 19:11.74; Rose Gayheart, 56, 21:04.08; Madison Treadway, 58, 21:16:05; and Brianna Williams, 61, 25:32.78.
Broderick McDonald was the lone CMS male participant, placing 40th in 14:20.67.
Several CMS runners missed the meet due to an important extracurricular academic function, but Lavell said the runners still managed to get in a workout.
Lavell praised volunteer assistant coach Dan Stowers for his assistance, particularly in setting up the middle school course at the recent Oak Hill event. “Dan Stowers has been a big help volunteering his time and effort.”
The Collins roster is as follows:
Girls — Faith Bigelow, Taylor Wills, Madison Elkin, Rachel Allen, Maddie Stowers, Destiny Minor, Emma Hines, Madison Treadway, Lilly Cline, Rose Gayheart, Brianna Williams and Casey Bolling; and
Boys — Broderick McDonald, Cole Harwood, Tanner Harris and Ian McDonald.
Collins will compete in the George Washington Classic on Sept. 26, followed by the Greenbrier East Invitational on Oct. 1.