Thornapple Kellogg High School
Girls Varsity Cross Country
Game Summaries & Headlines.
- Game Date
- Nov 5, 2022
Actual image of spectators moving from one area to the next during yesterday’s Division II cross country state finals, at the Michigan International Speedway.
It was a blustery day at MIS yesterday, but this did not deter sophomore Ava Crews from taking on the very talented field at her second go around in as many years, at the state championship. Ava held her usual calm demeanor through the two hour bus ride, through the windy and rainy introduction we received while riding the tram from the bus parking area to the athlete’s infield, through the slightly chilly and tent shaking wind while she pinned her numbers to her uniform, through touring the course when the wind seemed to subside, up to the moment she stood on the starting line when the wind very noticeably picked up once again.
Whether there is internal turbulence within Ava prior to or during a race, onlookers would not be able to discern it. From Ava’s moderate voice inflections, to her calm body language, from all visible and audible cues, she exhibits a vision of calmness. This was true throughout yesterday’s experience as well.
Ave navigated the packed field of uber talented athletes and challenging conditions with maximum effort. The race started with a little over a quarter mile of a fierce headwind, followed by a pretty good stretch of tailwind where the athletes could feel fast again, then they were able to have a little protection behind some trees for a less than a half mile loop where they crossed the two-mile point, after which they headed back into the stadium and headed around the track. However, once getting to the track, another ¾ of a mile remained, and about 800 meters of that was all headwind.
Every runner in the race had to contend with the same conditions and the same fierce cast of athletes, and it was evident at the end when they were all slumped over and walking on wobbly legs, that they all worked very hard; including Ava. Ultimately, Ava finished 58th. When you consider that one had to be in the top of their respective regional meets to even be at the meet, and that Ava finished in the top 23% of the field in this race, that is pretty darn impressive. The last All-State qualifier (30th place), finished in 19:14, and Ava finished in 58th place, in 19:55. This means that in the space of only a little over 40 seconds (the difference between where All-State was and Ava), there were nearly 30 athletes. That is a lot of high quality athletes right there! Behind Ava were nearly 200 of the best runners in the state, in Division II.
Regardless of where Ava finished, Ava’s support “crews” consisting of her family and all but two of her teammates, along with her coach, provided full love and support before, during, and after the race.
Although it will one day be great to have the whole team line up at the state finals, we are all proud of our champion runner who represented us well and provided us with inspiration. Congratulations on yet another solid finish at the state championship Ava!