Main photo: The HHS novice girls cross-country team, (from left) Kaitlyn Watson, Nadia Parsons, Paige Bennett, Mya Marshall, and Eden Bennett, had Huntsville High School’s best showing ever at OFSAA 2019 (supplied)
The weather conditions at the 2019 OFSAA (Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations) provincial cross-country championships made for a tough competition, but the snow and wet grounds did not hinder Huntsville High School’s runners from bringing their personal bests on the trails and across the finish line.
Four HHS teams—novice girls, novice boys, junior girls and senior boys—and para athlete Mark Cheek competed against the best of the best runners from 896 secondary schools across Ontario on Saturday, November 2 in Sudbury.
The novice girls team landed in the top eight with their seventh place finish landing them a podium spot. This is the best result ever for HHS, said Coach Pierre Mikhail.
A parent, Tracy Marshall, said how proud she is of all of the runners on the novice girls team. “The girls supported each other as a team. Every one of the girls improved as the season progressed. This was both due to their hard work, and the amazing coaching from Coach Pierre and the high school coaching staff. The focus of the team has always been team work and the coaches helped foster this team atmosphere with team dinners, pancake breakfasts, ‘runner of the day’, and amazing practice sessions.”
The senior boys team came in at a close tenth place at OFSAA 2019 and the junior girls team with a 13th-place finish.
The day had a few individual stand-out performances with Mark Cheek placing third in the para race, Mya Marshall finishing 35th among novice girls and Cameron Heinz at 36th for the senior boys. Each race included 250-270 racers.
“Our dedicated coaches and runners have built a running culture over the last several years,” said Mikhail. “We want HHS XC to be a team kids want to join. Get fit, be accepted, make friends, run for life.”
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