Regional cross country runners recap season

The Devine Arabian Cross Country team competed at a high level throughout the season. Each runner recorded their personal best at several of the invitationals. Along with Warhorse runner Colin Rogers, they capped off a terrific season by advancing to the Regional Meet October 23rd. Each shared their thoughts on their successful season.
Bri Bernal—My first year running Cross Country was amazing. I love my team and especially my coach. We are all a little family, everyone goes together perfectly. All of the hard practices, fun, late night team dinners, and Saturday meets all helped us bond and grow not only as a team, but also as a family.
If it were not for Coach Vay, I would not have reached my potential. She does so much for all of us; she motivates us and cooks for us! She is a second mom. I thank her and my team for always supporting me in doing my best. I love every single one of them with all of my heart. I cannot wait for next year!!!
Lorena Chavera—I want to thank my coach for always motivating me and pushing me to do my very best. I also thank my teammates who are always encouraging me and constantly by my side every step of the way.
Having challenges every day and accomplishing them at the end of the day is the best feeling in the world! This season was the best yet. What I always keep in mind is the faster you run, the faster you are done. Live the Challenge!!!
Espi Mendoza—I thank my coach for making me into a great athlete and pushing me to be the best that I can be. I also thank Brooke for pushing me at every meet which made me better. If it were not for her, I would not have made it to Regional as an individual.
I am thankful for my team and our accomplishments. I am very proud of how far we advanced and how we performed at Regional going from an 11th place finish a year ago to 8th place this season.
Jasmine Stricker—Around track season my sophomore year, Coach Vay and I made a deal that if I did not do track that year, I would have to do Cross Country my junior year…and of course I took the deal because this girl is not trying to kill herself in the heat during track season!!! LOL So, it is towards the end of summer right before two-a-days and I begin to rethink my life decisions because, let’s be honest, I did not want to run that summer. I did not run the workout that summer and two-a-days soon arrived; it was death, but somehow I managed.
I am honestly so happy Coach Vay and I made that deal because it allowed me to meet some of the coolest, funniest, and weirdest (in a good way!) people ever!!! I could not have made it these past two seasons without Coach Vay and my teammates.
I thank her for being the best possible coach she could be. She definitely has played a huge role in shaping the type of person I am today. Thank you for always being there, for being a person that I can turn to and count on, and most importantly, for pushing me to always do my personal best.
To my teammates, I LOVE Y’ALL!!! Thanks for always being yourselves and for making my last two years great ones. To next year’s runners, run every race like it is your last because before you know it, it will be your last time of ever getting nervous before your race, the last time touching a starting line, and your last time to ever cross a finish line.
In conclusion, stay groovy my dudes! I will not be here next year, but I will miss it all…I love y’all and do not forget to Live the Challenge!!!
Mari Murillo—This past season proved to have many challenges and successes for our team. Through all, lessons were learned and many moments became cherished by each individual on the team. With all of that said, Cross Country proves to be more than a high school sport; Cross Country is a resemblance of life.
Each tests an individual on how much pain can one take, how many times one can get back up each time after failure, and it tests ones patience on how long one can wait for success to happen. If one can take the pain and failures in both life and Cross Country and be patient, one will reap the benefits and success in each thing. Cross Country is not just a sport; it is a lifestyle!
Colin Rogers—I thank Coach Vay and Coach Beaty for all their work and having my back. My last year was one I will never forget!
Bri Bowyer—It was a tough but exciting year. The workouts made me see and show myself as a better person and runner. My team and coach showed me how motivating Cross Country can be. No matter how tired I was, I would motivate my teammates to keep going every morning and evening.
It was an honor to represent Devine High School and the Arabian varsity team at Regionals. I am looking forward to next season with my Cross Country family. Never forget, Live the Challenge!!!
Brooke Runyan—This season was so much more than just running. I made life-long friends, became more mentally tough, and developed a true team bond.
Victoria Whitaker—Cross Country does not have a bunch of fans/supporters as every other sport, but that is okay. In Cross Country, each runner cheers everyone else on whether they are in the middle of running their own race or watching someone else run theirs. They cheer each runner from first to last, from their own team and from other teams.
I have met so many new people and have created so many new friendships that will last a lifetime. I have enjoyed getting to bond with my teammates at team dinners, practices, meets, and even during lunch at school.
I thank Coach Vay for always believing in me when I wanted to give up on myself, and Coach Beaty for being the best assistant coach the Cross Country team could ask for.
Abigail Whitaker—My last season was one I will never forget. I have learned so much and experienced opportunities few will ever achieve. I thank all my teammates who have come into my life, and my amazing coach. Thanks to them, I can say I have felt appreciated, loved, and more importantly, like I belonged.
For some crazy reason, Cross Country found its way into our hearts, and the next thing you know a group of strangers became more than a team. We became a family! Through the good, bad, sweat, and tears, this season was beyond successful. Devine Cross Country has left its mark on not just the course, but my life as well. I am ever so grateful for the memories and miles.
By Jerel Beaty
Staff Writer