Last season, the Lakewood cross country team wasn’t represented at the Class 2A state meet, breaking a lengthy streak. The program had qualified at least one runner in every state meet since 1984. Cougars coach Jeff Sowards said he hopes his squads can start a new streak this fall.
“Both teams are looking to put things together to potentially be in the running for one of the four berths to state,” he said. “That’s realistic for us, but it won’t be easy. What came out of a (Sept.12 post-race) meeting was that the process is more important than the end goal. That’s their driving force.”
Sowards said sophomore Alex Jensen and senior Adam Cross will be Lakewood’s top two runners on the boys side. He also praised the leadership of senior Jonny Moore. On the girls side, Sowards said the Cougars will be paced by sophomores Madison Howe and Callie Buchanan, as well as senior Palina Buchanan, the team’s “rock and linchpin,” according to the coach.
“We have about 35 kids on the team, and while that’s a small number for us, they’ve shown a lot of dedication throughout the summer, and there’s a great foundation here,” Sowards said. “They’re incredibly positive, and willing to do what it takes to be the best they can be.”