The Camanche boys cross country team made history last season.
That’s not quite enough.
The boys stated at the end of the 2018 season that they were disappointed they didn’t place as a team, making it to the deck in Fort Dodge.
“I think it definitely motivated them,” head coach Erin Montgomery said. “It motivated some of them to get out there, put in a couple more miles this summer and head to some camps. We’ve started off the season with some excellent practices: everyone is working hard and attitudes are great.”
They have their top two runners back for another go at it, and have a couple new faces filling in down the lineup. Dylan Darsidan placed seventh at last year’s state meet, the only individual place winner for the Indians. However, Dodson Melchiori was a big reason the qualified as a team to start with.
They also have freshmen to will be filtering in after them.
“They’ve been posting some really nice times this summer,” Montgomery said. “We’re pretty excited about getting going. We changed our schedule around a bit to get in some tougher meets to see how we stack up against them.”
As for the girls, Markee Low is back for her senior year, trying to make it back to Fort Dodge for the second time before leaving Camanche High School.
“Markee is pretty motivated,” Montgomery said. “Each year she’s been out her goal has been to get to state and last year she did, so she wants to go back there. She knows what she needs to do and we’re pushing her hard and expect high things out of her.”
The rest of the girls’ squad is made up primarily of girls out to stay active and stay in shape, not girls looking for a state berth or to place high.
They’re still equally crucial to the team. The team is a close group and the morale helps in a sport like cross country. Plus, they help push Low during practice.
“I love that they’re staying active and out for a sport and the goal is still to get better each meet,” Montgomery said. “It’s great to have more girls on the team and they’re pushing each other and push other younger kids at practice.”
The Indians open their season just down the road in Clinton next Tuesday, joining other local teams at Emma Young Park for the home River King and Queen’s Invitational.