On October 17, 2018, the Midlo Cross Country team assembled at Pocahontas State Park to compete in their last regular season meet of the year. The course has become a type of muscle memory for the runners; they have raced countless competitions and run hundreds of training miles on this field, which left a bittersweet feeling as they prepared to complete their last race. This night filled the seniors’ hearts with both glee and sadness, as they will forever remember their journey competing as athletes for Coach Stan Morgan.
The senior boys include: Max Etka, Andrew Steenkamer, Ian Gray, Thomas Gray, Josh Babb, Justin Elliot, Reed Shelor, and Tristan Smith. Etka, Steenkamer, Elliot, Shelor, and Smith have run for Coach Morgan for four years, and Etka and Steenkamer lead the team as captains. Arm-in-arm with their parents, these young men received a flower and card, written by Coach Morgan, to end their Midlo Cross Country careers. Additionally, teammates celebrated each senior with a handmade poster, emblazoned with pictures and stars. Standout runner and captain Andrew Steenkamer expresses, “As a captain, I feel that it is my responsibility to positively influence my fellow runners, and I feel that the other captain, Max Etka, and I have done so. Also, I am sad that this journey is coming to an end, but I know that Coach Morgan has prepared me for the years to come, and I cannot wait to run in the future.”
This year, Olivia Morris, the only female senior, stood with her mother before her teammates, coaches, and friends. Morris has run for four years for Coach Morgan, and has excelled in her sport the entire time. During the ceremony, her teammates presented Olivia with a large and colorful bouquet, signifying their respect and true admiration of her. Also a captain, Morris comments, “I feel that I have kept a very positive attitude towards running, and I am sad that my racing has come to an end. I am very excited to see what the younger runners can accomplish in the years to come.”
Congratulations to all of the seniors on their exciting seasons and careers.