Expected excellencePublished 11:29am Friday, November 2, 2012
So many miles. So many memories. The boys and girls Perham cross country teams are on their way to claiming another state title.
For the 11th straight trip for the boys and the 10th for the girls, it was almost expected that the Yellowjackets were going to make it again this year.
“If we were not to get to state, I would look at whether or not we had done everything within our control to be prepared,
Perham coach Jeff Morris. “So if we didn’t qualify and we weren’t prepared it would be a huge let down, but sometimes there are teams that are just better.”
But so far the Yellowjackets have not found that team. As strong leaders, the seniors have carried the team throughout the season.
Senior Ciarrin Covington, has been a 2-3 runner all year and has given the girls team the confidence to go out and run with anyone in the state. Making it to state seven times Ciarrin has given the team the experience and leadership that was needed.
“I have had a lot of great leaders in my girls program but Ciarrin has been one of the best leaders to vocalize a team first mentality,” Morris added.
On the other side, Dalton Dahms and Nick Carigan have kept the boys team pushing forward. “They are the guys that no matter what are going to do whatever needs to be done to keep the focus on the team and not one individual.”
But it’s not just the athletes that make this team. Head Coach Jeff Morris was named the Section 8A Coach and has done incredible things for the Perham cross country program.
“Don’t get me wrong, it definately is an honor that I’m glad to have, but the honor itself is not as important as knowing that I have the respect of my peers. I just want our teams to go and win but to do it in such a way that demonstrates what winning with class is all about.” Morris commented.
He has worked hard to create a culture that trickles down to the Junior High program, which allows the younger athletes to grow up and be mentored by the upperclassmen, uniting them as a team. He has taught his athletes to respect the competition when they go out and run and reminds them everyday that being from a small town, such as Perham, does not limit the size of their dreams.
When asked to describe the team, both runners Ciarrin Covington and Keeghan Hurley replied with one simple word,”family.”
“I know everyone always says that, but for this team it is especially true,” said Hurley. “We are really close, we do literally everything together even outside of school.”
Making it to state is a feeling that can’t be described and is incredibly exciting, but for some it brings about some tougher emotions.
“It’s gonna be hard once we cross that finish line for the last time and to say goodbye to the family we have become,” says Covington. “We have trained all summer for this moment and now its here. We just gotta live it.”