The Vikes carried out their triumphant strategy at Rensselaer on Saturday, finishing first place in every grade, even with the top seven guys not running in the meet. Each grade, freshman through senior, had a swift lead over the competition, which included Merrillville and Crown Point, and the coaches are proud of the boys’ hard work.
With a whopping seven boys finishing in the top ten, the freshmen felt the time they dedicated to training is really paying off. Holding the trophy, the boys rejoiced at their promising future to come. Says freshman Corey Sanders, “I think overall the freshman had their best race of the season. For at least the first mile, the front pack was all green. We had seven of the top ten runners!” Indeed, they performed excellently, and look forward to the next meets.
The sophomores also ran outstandingly. They placed third, seventh, and eleventh. “Well, last year we didn’t meet our goals. So this year we planned on showing everyone that we meant business. We weren’t sure that we would get first, since Merrillville and Crown Point’s sophomores are good runners. It was a tough race and a close one but our sophomores proved our valiance”, sophomore Jerry Perez said.
The juniors followed suit. With cautious control over the pace, the juniors were able to keep from striding out too quickly. Junior Connor Devine spoke for all by saying, “We had our faster runners go out a more comfortable pace and our middle and back runners scaled it back and ran at paces they were comfortable to race. We didn’t have anyone go out too fast like other runners who ran themselves into the ground at the beginning of the race at that meet.” The juniors packed a powerful punch, and are ready to race at New Prairie next weekend.
During their last race at Rensselaer and with many injured boys back into racing, the seniors made this time count. Relaxed and intent, they enjoyed their final victory at Rensselaer with wholeheartedness. Jordan Galligan, one of the seniors, improved his time from 21:54 during freshman year to 16:54, a stunning total of five minutes. Overjoyed, he recounted, “I feel great about my race today and I’m proud of our team. I stuck to the game plan and ran with my teammates. I was feeling good through the mile and knew I had a chance to win. It’s awesome when you can sit your top seven and still win each race. It truly shows our depth.” Jordan and his fellow seniors relish the opportunity to run their last year, and like the rest of the team, are filled with ambition.
Coach Michael Prow was bestowed with an award for being “Coach of the Year”. He gratefully accepted the honor, and announced that the team can be seen in action at the New Prairie Invitational next weekend, where they look forward to further victories.
(Photos in this article provided by Kathy Mangel)