Established 1874.

The Oberlin Review

Established 1874.

The Oberlin Review

Established 1874.

The Oberlin Review

Cross Country Continues Success in Indiana

Last weekend, Oberlin’s cross country teams competed at the Nike XC Town Twilight Invitational meet in Terre Haute, IN. The women bested seven other teams and earned a second-place finish, while the men finished in fourth. Both teams have been successful in recent years, with the men’s team winning the North Coast Athletic Conference championship last year, while the women’s team finished in third. 

The teams have carried their momentum into the beginning of this season. The Yeowomen placed second in two of their four meets, and the Yeomen have similarly finished in the top third in half their meets. 

The Yeowomen are led by the duo of fourth-year Eliza Medearis and third-year Sage Reddish, who have routinely placed in the top 10 this season. Last weekend, they finished seven seconds apart from each other, earning sixth and seventh, respectively. Medearis credited Reddish for their combined accomplishments.

“For me personally, Sage is my running buddy, ride or die,” Medearis said. “And I feel like everyone on the team has at least one person, if not three or four people, that have worked out together. Someone you can just look for in a race. That’s so valuable. That was definitely how our men’s team won [the] conference last year, by just being together and looking out for each other.”

The Yeomen ran well last weekend, placing all five of their runners in the top 45. Third-year Johnny Ragsdale, who rounded out Oberlin’s top five, was appreciative of how the team works together to push each other through pain and discomfort. He acknowledged  the team’s mental toughness as one of their strong suits.

“I think we run really well together when in a lot of pain,” Ragsdale said. “On cross country courses, you get in a lot of pain, and you gotta stay tough, you gotta deal with that. And I think that this group has really grown together over the past couple years, how we’re able to work together and build together.”

Head Coach Ray Appenheimer was quick to focus on the community the cross country team has built and the aura surrounding the team.

“So much of what we do, and get so much out of is extracting as much joy and connection out of each day,” Appenheimer wrote in an email to the Review. “This team is such a positive community that supports one another at practice, at races, and throughout their lives. There is such a positive energy around this group that success is all but assured.”

Medearis echoed Appenheimer’s statement and emphasized the importance of balance on the team.

“Leading up to the meet [last weekend], we just had spent the whole day together, we were goofing off, spending time with each other, and having fun,” Medearis said. “And I think that really leads to strong performance. We’re competitive, but we know how to have fun with it. Everyone is genuinely happy to be there and go out and do our best.”

The NCAC Championships are in under four weeks and both teams are looking forward to the competition. However, runners and coaches alike signified the importance of enjoying the journey and not thinking too much about the race.

“We are getting closer to the championship portion of the season,” Appenheimer wrote. “We want to stay healthy, stay positive, stay focused, and take care of ourselves and one another. We’ve found that always being focused on the process ends up yielding the best results.”

Medearis had a similar view. She expressed excitement about the championship race but was wary to look too far ahead.

“Winning [the] conference would be huge,” she said. “A conference second place would also be huge, but we have to shoot for the moon. We definitely want to be the winners. But we also just want to have fun. I feel like that’s the main goal for me and the entire team, … just finishing out [the season] really, really strong and happy.”

Cross country will continue their season next Saturday, Oct. 14, at the SUNY Geneseo Mike Woods Invitational in Geneseo, NY.

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