Cross country goes the extra mile to test personal limits

The CHHS cross country team competed in the Myrtle Invitational on Aug. 26.

Abigail Penfield, Staff Writer

This season, cross country Coach Austin Epting said he hopes to create a strong family atmosphere and continue, or better, last year’s results.

“Our goal this year is to build a program worthy of competing for championships,” Epting said, adding that he is excited about the athletes’ continuous progress and the positive attitude they bring to the team.

Center Hill High School’s cross country team began team practices during the summer on Tuesday and Thursday mornings, and several of the runners have said they are excited to show how hard they’ve worked.

There are 11 returning runners and six new runners this on this year’s roster.

“I like cross country because it tests our true limits,” said senior Kevin Mendoza, one of the new runners.

Drew Ashley, also a senior, agreed.

“I enjoy cross country because there’s nothing left up to interpretation,” he said. “The clock tells the story of how good of a runner you are.”

Ashley said he is excited for his last high school season because of the level of dedication his teammates possess.

The team’s first meet was Aug. 26 at BNA Park in New Albany. CHHS co-hosted the Myrtle Invitational with Myrtle High School.

Center Hill is also hosting the DeSoto County Cross Country Championships on Oct. 21. The runners will compete on a new, more spectator-friendly course featuring more grass and less road.

Last year, Center Hill’s cross country team raced most of their meets on Tuesday nights at Shelby Farms Park. This year, all of their meets are on Saturday mornings, except for State which will be on a Monday. Epting said the team will be traveling to meets at different places, including Oxford and Michigan City.