Season in Review - Cross Country Coaches

Season in Review – Cross Country Coaches

Our Cross Country Blazers have completed their 2023 season. The boys came home with the State Champions trophy and the girls brought back the 1st Runner-Up trophy. With the season ending, it’s time to get insider details from Coach Angie Dentler and Coach Dave Smith!

 

Question (Q): Comparing the start of the season to now, how has the team grown, not only as runners but as people?

Dentler (D): Our boy’s team added several new runners at the beginning of the season. It has been challenging to catch them up to date on the expectations and culture of our team. Our Girls also welcomed new runners into their top 10 over the summer.

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Smith (S): We’ve been fortunate to have a team that looks out for each other, loves each other and celebrates with each every meet and every day! Our goal at the start of the season is to be the best we can be on the last meet of the season.

Q: Can you describe the training methods or techniques used to help your athletes improve their race performance?

D: We have three different phases of training that we progress through from June to November. We concentrate on building a strong base over the summer, strength in the early season, and speed at the end!

S: I love speed repeats; I feel like the more sprints we run in practice, the better we’ll be on the finishing kick to the finish line.

Q: Which meet would you say was your favorite this season?

D: Eye Opener was memorable! The boys confirmed just how good they could be by winning this super competitive meet against schools from three states. The family tailgate after was also a fun experience. Our parents can cook!

S: I love them all, but winning Greenville County and sweeping the Region are by far the best until [state championships], of course!

Q: How has the team bonded this season outside of meets?

D: Our secret ingredient to training is reinforcing a family atmosphere where they support and love each other. Our team spends a lot of time together over the season. Heaven and Hell week is highlight of the summer training, where they spend 4 days and nights together. Our Leadership retreat brought members of the team together as they focused on goals for the season. Traveling to Raleigh and Charleston for meets also helps to bond the team through shared experiences.

S: I tell people all the time we eat more like a Football Team than a Cross Country Team, anytime we can all get together to eat, it’s pretty special. I think the Paris Mountain Run was awesome, and running camp this past summer was great!

Q: Setbacks are a part of sports – how would you say the team has dealt with them?

D: Injuries are always disheartening. The girls have missed having Julia DiPasqua as part of the top 10 this year. Our runners know they have to step up when someone is out!

S: We’ve been blessed to make it through the season without any major setbacks with injuries or other unexpected setbacks. We always have runners step up if anybody is having an off day or race.

Q: Do you have anything you would like to say to the team as a whole? Words of encouragement, advice, etc.

D: Get Fired Up! Love each other, and make your bed every day!

S: Get Fired Up; it’s a great day to be a Blazer!

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Hayden Miller, News Editor
My name is Hayden! I am the only freshman on The Forge crew for the '23-'24 school year! Writing is my strong suit, from poems to novels - I love it all! I am a huge mental health advocate, and I am hoping to spread more mental health awareness around GMC and (hopefully) the rest of the world. I am looking forward to a great year at GMC! Go Blazers!
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