The Cross Country season has left an impression on Princeton Community High School this year. The girls’ season has come to a close.
There were five girls on the team this year, including Sydney Young and Elisabeth Glomski, seniors at PCHS who were coached by Debbie Ridgley.
“We had so many injuries and illnesses for everybody. We all did really well and never gave up even though we had all gone through hardships,” Young said.
Young was right about the hardships. Almost everyone on the team had some sort of health problem.
“Hydration is important,” said Glomski while talking about how she went to the hospital after her first meet.
Even with all the health problems that went on, Ridgley said she is very proud of her girls.
“We had girls who didn’t give up,” Ridgley said.
That’s one of the things Ridgley said she wanted students to get out of the sport. She said she wanted her students to build their character.
Ridgley said cross country builds teamwork and compassion.
“(You) learn about sacrifice and commitment,” she said.
Both Glomski and Young said they joined cross country because their friends were doing it.
“The best recruiters are the girls themselves. You have to use peer pressure,” Ridgley said.
This is how she plans to increase the number of girls on the team for next year’s season.
While the girl’s season is over, the boy’s cross country team’s season is still going.
The boy’s team has had one of the most successful seasons in Princeton Community High School history. On this team, coached by Bill Niederhaus, are many successful runners including Lee Friedman, Chandler Weeks, and Jackson Krieg.
“We were Big 8 and Sectional Champions, Taylor University Invite Champs, and Olney Invite Champs,” Niederhaus said.
The team placed 9th in Semi-State, one of the highest ranks Princeton’s cross country team has ever gotten.
“The season went well. We had great success right from the get go. We are the best cross country team Princeton has ever had,” Friedman said.
Even though the season as a team is over, one runner’s season is still going. Jackson Krieg is the only runner from Princeton that qualified for State this season.
“Jackson, I believe, should get the most recognition because he is the most devoted. He’s put the most time into it. He’s the person most athletes can look to as a role model,” Weeks said.
While Krieg has been more at the forefront of the team, Spencer Brittingham, freshman has been succeeding behind the scenes. This has not gone unnoticed by Friedman.
“He (Brittingham) has stepped up and improved astronomically. He puts in work at practice and has a lot of heart. He was varsity post season and has really helped the team get to where we got this year,” Friedman said.
Being a team is supporting one another and both Niederhaus and Ridgely said they think this.
“One person can be a key ingredient to a team, but one person cannot be a team. Everyone on the team brings something positive to help the team,” Niederhaus said.
Ridgley said something similar to this.
“That’s always why I liked cross country. You get close enough to feel like a close family,” Ridgley said.
Both the girl’s and boy’s cross country team have done extremely well this season and hope to keep improving in the future.