Young runners show big potential in 2009 season
While Ivan Espinosa was undoubtedly the most decorated Cardinal runner in 2009, cross country coach Paul Boone said his pride stemmed from the efforts of the entire team.
Espinosa, medaled as the lone Eudora competitor in this year’s state meet at Wamego. But the rest of Boone’s squad made strides that made its coach confident in saying he was pleased with how the season turned out.
“We had kids with a lot of personal challenges,” Boone said. “Each athlete was working through different parts of the races. We made an awful lot of progress.”
Boone was particularly taken with the development of senior Kyle Snow, who ran cross country for the first time this season.
“He’s really taken to the sport well,” Boone said. “He was a great addition to the program. Colin Forsberg had a really strong season and so did Tim Borger. I think (Borger has) got a big upside.”
On the boys side, the coach believes he was just one runner short of having an extremely competitive team.
“I always brag on our league, but it’s true. The Frontier League is one of the best in the state of Kansas,” Boone said. “I mean we have state champions in Baldwin, and De Soto took second. Paola was also competitive. So when you see that we were fifth behind some of these teams that did so well at the regional and state meets, it shows that we’re close.”
The girls also finished fifth in the league. Boone said he was excited that some of his returning runners will be upperclassmen next year, including Kaya Riemann and Fernanda Garcia.
“And I expect that we will continue to get better on both sides next year,” Boone said.
With several runners already training for the 2010 season, Boone has higher expectations, but ones he believes will be fulfilled.
“We just want to continue to improve and get better,” he said. “In cross country, you pretty much run where you’re at. You won’t ever just bust off a time two minutes faster than your last one. That kind of improvement gets done in the summers.”