Phillips County News - One Nation, Under God

M-ette Cross Country: Young named MVR, O'Brien Most Impoved


Junior Leslie Young was named Malta's Most Valuable Runner in 2019. Photo by Pierre Bibbs.

I would like to recognize the team. Seniors Kaycee Bond and Jillian O'Brien, juniors Danie Rhodes and Leslie Young, freshmen Izzie Hallenberg and Kirsta Meisdalen. A special thank you goes out to Assistant Coach Fallon Handley for all your dedication in making M-ette Cross Country a fun sport. I would like to thank all of you student-athletes who took up the challenge to run cross country this past season.

It takes a special kind of person to be able to make it through this tough endurance sport. You all worked very hard and had such a good attitude, even if things didn't always go the way you would have liked it too. We had a great season despite all the weird weather and meet cancellations. And of course, who will ever forget the state meet where all the runners faced the cruelty of a late fall-winter storm, and each having to run three miles over three inches of wet, slushy, slippery snow and a wind chill of twenty degrees. But you each persevered and we are proud of your accomplishments this past season.

I will be presenting two cross country awards.

Most Improved Runner: Our most improved runner award this year goes to a young lady who started out with our summer running and early-season Saturday practices, and if she couldn't make it, she would try to make it up on her own. She is a coachable and enthusiastic athlete. She is very pleasant and is always smiling. She works hard at every practice, pushing herself to be at the front of the group, and at meets she is working to keep in the front of the pack and place in the top half. The early part of the season was hard, but she worked hard to improve her time over the course of the season and was consistent in the improvement. Because of this hard work, she ran something that is hard for an upperclassman cross country runner to do and she ran her second best state time, improving it by nearly a minute running over a wintry course with less than ideal conditions. This year's most improved runner award goes to Jillian O'Brien.

Most Valuable Runner: Our most valuable runner award this year goes to a young lady who is very coachable and willing to try suggestions to improve her running and time and never complains about what we want her to do and how far and sometimes asks if she can go further and hopes she doesn't get lost. She has a desire to push herself not only in each practice but also at the meets, no matter what the conditions are and even when you're not up to par. She participated in our summer runs and early season Saturday practices to get some extra conditioning in. This fun-loving, giggly girl is the hardest worker on the team and pushes herself at an intense level and because of that was our top runner at each and every meet. This year's award for the Most Valuable Runner goes to Leslie Young.


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