I am a senior at Pinnacle High School in Phoenix, Arizona. I enjoy running, my family, my friends, and our three dogs. My athletic focus as a high school student has been cross country and track and field. Prior to running in high school, I competed year round on a competitive club soccer squad from the age of seven, until a tough tackle during a summer tourney ended my freshman year XC season before it started due to a displaced clavicle fracture which was a bit slow to heal.
Once recovered, I chose to pursue a developing passion for distance running in instead. My experience and friendships made while part of the distance squad have been the most special for me in high school. I believe up till now, my strongest event to be the 3200 meters on the track, I am solid as well in the 1600 and on the XC course. I enjoy running the 400 meters on up.
I have really fortunate to make it back to both the trails last fall and to the track this spring to compete during my senior year. It has been a bit of a comeback experience for me, after I had suffered additional competitive setbacks that spanned late XC season my sophomore year through the end of my junior year due to some unexpected health issues.
I am happy and grateful to now be healthy and racing stronger each month. I am ticking away at my PRs and my current best marks are 9:30.28 in the 3200m, and 4:29.92 in the 1600m, and I am working to target 4:20 for the 1600 and 9:20 for the 3200 in the immediate weeks ahead.
Last fall, I had wrapped up my senior XC season with a PR of 16:11.8 at the NXR SW Regional meet, still shooting for a sub 16:00 race as my conditioning improved.
I believe I still have room for improvement with my racing. My performances were limited, and results reflect, due to long training gaps and diminished racing capacity from late during my sophomore XC season through my junior track season when I had multiple hospitalizations over an 18-month period. This time was a further wrench tossed upon my high school performance dreams, but as truly wanted to return, my focus in life shifted towards my health. I intermittently "participated" with my squad when able, during those months, but did so more for morale and to stay connected with my teammates, in hopes I could someday return. Academically, and athletically it was a challenging time, but thanks to a ton of support, I never felt left behind.
I have had great encouragement during my "comeback"; my family and teammates met me in tears as I broke our school 3200 meter record last month, and each week cheer me towards knocking off the 1600 mark. I feel I yet have potential for further improvement now that my health has returned and I am getting miles behind me.
My educational interests are in sports broadcasting, teaching, athletic training, and sports psychology, ultimately still yet undecided.
My parents were both originally from the state of Kansas and both were runners before meeting in Arizona. My father competed at the collegiate level years ago at Kansas State University, and my mother ran into adulthood including marathon distances. I have a sister, named Carly, who is 13 years old, and very involved in theatre.
Outside of my running, in high school I have been involved with our school's mental health club's suicide awareness initiative, I attend weekly a youth group at my neighborhood church. The last two year I have also worked as an aide in a classroom specializing in assisting students of special needs. I like helping with students who face challenges. I believe I am a good friend and a supportive teammate. I think the setbacks I faced during high school when I was ill further helped me become a more patient and compassionate person, to appreciate the little things and take very little for granted. I look forward to testing myself in the future as the comeback continues!