Back in action

This last Wednesday the SJM Cross Country team celebrated their first meet in over a year!

The team had the honor of hosting it on the Memorial campus.

“I am very glad we had the help of the school administration to put on this race,” stated cross country head coach Michael Danks-Ferguson.

The excitement and gratitude for the opportunity to finally race again were also visible in every individual who participated in the meet. Boys cross country team co-captain, Zachari Levy, shared with me his gratefulness for this cross country season by saying he was “very blessed to have a season.”

Levy and his co-captain and brother, Jacob Levy, both expressed how the global pandemic has brought numerous changes to the world, but also to them as student-athletes. These changes have made the opportunity of having a season (though it may be shorter than usual) a huge blessing, and everyone on the team is grateful for every day we are allowed to run with one another. To some, this season is even more important than to others.

The Girls cross country team co-captain, Analiese Figueroa, has been injured since her first season freshmen year. She explained “not being able to race these last two seasons, has been a struggle, but to race today feels really good.” The opportunity and privilege to have a cross country season in the midst of Covid is truly a blessing and I think the entire SJM Cross Country team can agree.

I know personally the season and the changes Covid has brought to me in terms of cross country have had a great effect on me. When Covid first struck, I continued to run and had a workout routine throughout the summer. It was not until news that a season looked unlikely to happen broke when I began to lose hope. It made it more difficult to continue working out because I felt as if there was nothing to work for. However, I overcame those doubts and decided to work harder not just for myself but for my team. I had to remind myself that every time I run it is not just for me, it is for my team, my coach, my family and those who do not have the opportunity to do what I can. This season did lift my spirits, but it is extremely special because many are not able to compete right now. This season is a blessing and an opportunity to race in honors of those who are unable to compete during these unprecedented times. I love my team and I am glad to compete with these amazing athletes this season.

Go Panthers!


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