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The Student News Site of Vallivue High School

The Valli-Vue

The Student News Site of Vallivue High School

The Valli-Vue

Cross Country Seniors Head Into Districts This Weekend

The senior runners move into districts this week and reflect on their season.
From left to right: Seniors Bryan Pelayo, Xander Pett, Jordan Poulsen, Gohaun Manley, Abby Mills, Laura Harris, John Orton, and Coach Robert Thomas

The Vallivue cross country program will compete at the 4A SIC District meet on Friday and Saturday at Eagle Island State Park. Before one of the last meets this season, we spoke to the senior runners to ask about their season and future plans.

Laura Harris

Laura Harris is a senior on this year’s cross country team. Her goal this season was to go to state, which has not happened yet, as the season is not quite over, but hopefully will. Her favorite memory from this season was either running on the Nampa Greenbelt because it was so pretty or when she got a minute and a half PR at one of the recent races. Being a senior this year has been fun for Harris, but also weird because she is in the oldest age group in the school, really making her realize that she will be leaving soon and this chapter of her life will truly be over. In the future, she is considering running cross country for NNU and majoring in chemistry.

Gohaun Manley

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Gohaun Manley, a senior on the Vallivue cross country team, had a great season. His goal this year was not to get injured and to get back to the times that he had reached before his injury last year. He said that he is pretty close to this goal and will hopefully reach it by the end of the season. This season, his favorite memory was singing karaoke with his teammates on the bus ride back from the Twin Falls meet. In regards to his status as a senior, Manley says that he is ready to move out and go to college. He hopes to do intramural cross country in college if his chosen university, Carnegie Mellon, where he plans to get a degree in electrical engineering and mathematics, has the program. 

Abby Mills

Abby Mills is a senior and a long-time cross country runner. Her goal this season was to get in the 22 minute range for her 5k time. She has not accomplished this goal yet, but there are still a couple of weeks left in the season and she says that at the next meet, there is no doubt that she will get that PR because she’s only eight seconds away from it. Mills says that her favorite memory from this season was going to a nearby playground with her friends during practice and accidentally falling off the slide. When asked about her feelings on being a senior, her immediate response was “It feels surreal, like it shouldn’t be happening but it is.” She said that it is bittersweet because it is both the end of something good and the beginning of something else. Mills stated that after her last season of cross country, she will no longer compete, but will still run because it is something that she loves to do. She plans to attend BYU-I next year and pursue a degree in nursing.

John Orton

John Orton is a cross country senior with a goal to improve from last year. This is a goal that he has not yet accomplished, but with two weeks left in the season, he is confident that he will. His favorite memory from this season was simply being with his team. Orton said, “I really enjoy just being with everybody” because of the “good community of support that everyone has.” For Orton, being a senior feels no different than the year before except that it is a little bit easier. He does not plan to compete in cross country in the future but does plan to keep running and staying fit for fun. From here, he hopes to learn as much as he can to succeed in his life and his dream of becoming a musician.

Bryan Pelayo

Bryan Pelayo is a dedicated runner, whose goal this season was to keep improving his time from last year and to help his team get to state. With the upcoming district meet, Pelayo hopes that this goal will be achieved, stating that “I think we’re on track to get there.” Even if they do not make it to state, Pelayo had a great season, making many new memories, one of his favorites of which was the Bob Firman race. He also enjoyed it when Mr. Faulks came to run with them at practice one day. Being a senior this year is, as Pelayo stated, “a little bit terrifying” but he feels ready for whatever comes after. He hopes to run cross country at BSU later in his college career in order to continue improving his times and bettering himself. He plans to pursue a degree in mechanical engineering.

Xander Pett

Xander Pett is a senior on Vallivue’s cross country team. His goal this season was to break a 20 minute 5k, which has yet to happen, but with a few weeks left in the season, should be achievable if he works hard, as he’s currently sitting about two minutes away. He stated, “It’s usually the end of the season when I start breaking my PRs.” His favorite memory from this season was the Twin Falls race because he got to hang out with his team the entire day, which is something that he really enjoys. Being a senior makes Pett “kind of sad” because he’ll be leaving a huge part of his life behind in only a couple of months, which scares him, as it would anybody. When the season ends, he hopes to keep running by joining the Canyon County Cross Country Club and possibly doing cross country in college. 

Jordan Poulsen

Jordan Poulsen is a talented cross country athlete and Vallivue senior. His goal this season is to make it to state to compete for his team. He hopes to still meet this goal despite the shin splint injury he is recovering from, but hopefully, by districts, he will be back on track to compete to the best of his abilities. This season, Poulsen’s favorite memories were the bus rides, which allowed him to get to know his teammates and go “one on one with some of the guys.” For Poulsen, being a senior is different from past years. He likes being in that “upper role” where others are “always looking at you as an example” because this makes him want to work harder to deserve this status in order to show the younger athletes that they are capable of doing anything if only they put in the effort. He said “I’m just ready to graduate. I’m ready to hit college” where he plans to continue running cross country, though he doesn’t know where yet. Poulsen hopes to take his love of running into his future career as a sports analyst.

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About the Contributor
Alyssa Hardman, Staff Writer
My name is Alyssa Hardman and I am a junior in Ms. Ford’s journalism class at Vallivue High School. I have always been interested in writing, and I hope to pursue a career in writing someday. This is a huge part of why I am in this class as I knew it would give me a better understanding of the differences between certain writing styles. However, I am also in this class simply because I thought that it would be interesting to learn about what was happening around the school and to be able to inform others of these events. I especially enjoy writing stories that allow me to acknowledge people and their successes, and I hope to learn more about the proper process of journalistic writing throughout the rest of the school year.
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