Big leadership guides cross country into postseason

Jake Hopkins, Opinion Editor

Liberty’s cross country team has been a strong competitor in the state of Washington in recent years with the boys finishing 2nd in state last year and the girls taking the top spot. Liberty’s cross country team has recently made state for the 4th year in a row. While the two teams are similar in talent they are much different in age.
The girls team is older with four seniors and two juniors on varsity. It also has grown significantly in recent years. They have been trying to maintain the same closeness the team has had in past years.
“We still do all the same practices, we still have all the same team bonding events, we do our best not to leave anyone out,” team captain Dhaman Kaur said.
The girls team, like many high school sports, is somewhat divided by grade. Yet they have still been able to achieve a strong sense of team.
“Its helps that much of the team is older runners and have experience and have been to state,”  Kaur said.
The girls team still has many of the runners that helped them win state last year. With this strong experienced leadership and their current first place rank in 2A, the girls team hopes to have another strong performance at state this year. The girls are lead by Brigette Takeuchi who ran a 19:13 5K winning her a 4th place in the KingCo race.
Unlike the girls team the boys team is much younger with just two seniors on the team. The team is made up of mostly sophomores.
“In the next two years or so when a lot of the team is seniors and I am a junior we’re probably gonna have a really strong team,” freshman Alex Chin said.
The boys team has several strong young runners including Chin as well as sophomores Alex Hartford, Luke Knoblich and Rory McClelland. These boys are strong prospects for future years. All of them are on the freshman leaderboards for fastest times in a 5k with Knoblich taking the top spot at 17:12.