Cross Country Preview

For cross country teams across Indiana, making state is a landmark for the program. At Bloomington High School South, making state is an expectation. Both teams have each only missed state once in the last 20 years, and they hope to continue this success. As we enter a new season, here’s a look at how the two squads are shaping up. 

Girls Team

After barely missing out on state in a disappointing end to their season last year, the South girls cross country team are hoping to get back to the top. According to runner Kate Barada, they intend to do so with the team culture they have built.  

“We’re very supportive of each other,” said junior Barada. “There’s competition but it’s friendly competition, and we’re encouraging of each other.”

This positive approach to this season is one of the ways the team is handling the lack of seniors. However, even with only three seniors on the team, Barada isn’t worried about any missing leadership because “everyone leads themselves.” 

As they make their final preparations for the impending season, there is only one goal on the mind of each and every runner.

“[We want] to make it to state,” said Barada. “Last year we got cut off by one team, so that’s our goal.” 

The girls cross country team started their season Saturday, August 13 with a third place finish in the Early Bird Meet at Levern Gibson, Terre Haute. 

Boys Team

The standard for the South boys cross country team is very high. It’s so high, in fact, that a top 20 finish at State last year is seen as disappointing. However, junior Suoming Zhang believes that they are better than ever this year. This is largely due to Coach Larry Williams’ retirement from teaching. 

“This year Coach [Williams] retired and had a whole summer to enjoy and relax,” said Zhang. “I definitely feel a change in how he coaches.”

The positive ramifications of Coach Williams’ retirement have helped the team far more than anyone could have imagined. 

“Since our coach is happier, we are happier,” said Zhang. 

With the team starting to click as they near the start of the season, Zhang wishes to finish in the top five at state. However, he also dreams of accomplishing far more than just awards with his teammates.

‘’I hope that this season the team will push themselves to the limit and learn many valuable lessons from running.’’

The boys cross country team opened their season with a 5th place finish on Saturday, August 13 in the Valley Kick Off at Lavern Gibson, Terre Haute.