“We’re as close to peaking as we can be”
For the second year in a row, the Crested Butte Titans girls’ cross-country team is the regional champion. It’s an unprecedented feat and sets them up for yet another run at the top three at the state meet on Saturday, October 27 in Colorado Springs.
The team was familiar with the regional course in Basalt, having run a race there earlier in the season. Still, it h
ad been nearly two weeks since the team last ran a race, with several Titans spending their October break on a school trip in the United Kingdom. Fortunately, coach Charlotte Camp was on the trip as well and made sure some of their sightseeing was spent on the run.
While the team had a week of training at home before the regional race, Camp could see some residual effects from the time at sea level. Those concerns were soon replaced by a more immediate concern in the first mile of the regional event on Saturday, October 20.
Senior Titan runner Emma Coburn suffered a twisted ankle that would have easily dropped most runners from the race for good.
“When I saw her during the race she was literally in tears,” says Camp. “She just gutted it out. She is one of the toughest girls I know.”
Coburn pushed through the pain to lead the team with a fourth-place finish, posting a time of 21:12 on the five-kilometer course.
Freshman Erin Kelly followed 32 seconds behind Coburn to come in sixth place with a time of 21:44, and Junior Emma Vosburg crossed in seventh place, four seconds behind Kelly.
Freshman Hannah Smith came in 16th place with a time of 23:02 and freshman Madeline Malzhan took 20th place with a time of 23:31.
Not only did the team qualify for states by winning the regional race, but they all qualified as individuals as well by finishing in the top 20 of the field.
“They all qualified, which is so exciting,” says Camp. “Every girl had a great race. To hold the title for two years is thrilling.”
Boys’ runners sophomore Nicholas Harper-Johnson and freshman Jeffery Hargrove were not as fortunate. Both runners have been hampered by nagging injuries all season long and were unable to shake them in time for regionals.
Harper-Johnson finished in 33rd place and Hargrove took 46th place in the boys’ race—Camp was just glad they could see the season through despite the pain.
“They ran out the season and that’s great,” says Camp. “It’s been a good growing season for them.”
The girls now have their sights set on states, looking to match, if not improve upon, their third-place finish last year.
“We’re as close to peaking as we can be,” says Camp. “I hope the girls run to their full potential. If they do that, we should do well. We’re up against some incredibly talented teams.”