Jordan Legacy is one of two returning captains for the Plymouth cross country girls. Joshua Spaulding. (click for larger version)
August 25, 2014PLYMOUTH — Good numbers will hopefully lead to good things.
That is the hope of Plymouth cross country coaches Dave and Lorraine Robinson, who will be looking at a large number of boys and girls for this year's program.
On the boys' side, Dave Robinson reports that 36 athletes are out for the program after the first week of practice.
"Although this coach will not allow myself to become too excited or make predictions, there is a real positive vibe with the 2014 Plymouth Regional boys' cross country team," the veteran coach reported. "The unprecedented large numbers inherently suggests a highly competitive situation for the year end goal of sorting out whom will represent Plymouth at the states."
Dave Robinson points out that several of last year's returning runners came into the new season rejuvenated and in better shape to take on the challenges of the season. He also pointed out that there are many newcomers who arrived to challenge the veterans at the top of the pack.
Tyler Lester, Daniel Ambrose and Chris Schwartz will serve as the team's captains and their coach notes they will have their plates full modeling what is expected of a Plymouth harrier.
"There is no doubt that we have a tremendous range of ability and a youthful team, with but three seniors, but if the energy and drive holds with the newcomers, we will only become a better team," Dave Robinson stated.
The three major components to successful cross country running, endurance, speed work and resistance (hill work) have all been introduced to the team and the veteran coach reports just positive signs through the first week.
Dave Robinson notes that he could not be more pleased and encouraged after a week of team practices.
On the girls' side of things, Lorraine Robinson notes that there are 18 girls on the team, an even mix of newcomers and veterans, as nine girls return to the team and nine girls are out for the team for the first time.
"We are fortunate to have nine veteran runners back who have been infused with a highly competitive spirit by our nine new team members," Lorraine Robinson stated.
The team will be led by returning seniors Jordan Legacy and Anneke Huynen and their coach is hopeful that the seniors will lead a competitive team of Bobcats into the regular season.
"The Lady Bobcats have been working during practices on being regionally competitive, hopefully finding continued success throughout the 2014 cross country season," she stated.
Both teams have been focused on the first meet of the season, which is the Early Bird Invitational at Gunstock on Friday, Aug. 29.
The schedule also includes two home meets, one on Tuesday, Sept. 9, and the other on Friday, Oct. 10, both at 4 p.m. The Bobcats will also compete at neighboring Newfound on Tuesday, Sept. 16, in addition to running at Kennett, Kingswood, Laconia, Great Glen, Merrimack Valley and Coe-Brown.
Additionally, the team is once again looking forward to competing in the Finale in the Valley, the league meet to be held at Waterville Valley on Sept. 26. This marks the second year of the event, which was deemed a huge success last year, as racers from all around the Lakes Region and North Country converged on Waterville Valley for the meet.
Any businesses looking to donate towards funding the meet in exchange for their logos being placed on the meet shirt, can send donations to Waterville Valley XC League, c/o Dave Robinson, Plymouth Regional High School, 86 Old Ward Bridge Road, Plymouth, NH 03264.
Joshua Spaulding can be reached at 569-3126 or firstname.lastname@example.org