Ashling Osness, Long Beach The Long Way Back

After a great cross country season last year, in which she finished second in Class 5A and third in the Class 5A 3200 meters outdoors, Ashling Osness of Long Beach thought she was on her way. But then her world came crashing down two days after the outdoor state meet.

While out riding on an ATV, as a passenger, a crash occurred. The ATV overturned on a slope and the driver was able to jump off but Ashling could not.  The ATV rolled on top of her. Her injuries were extensive. She fractured her pelvis in five places, her first ribs, left clavicle. Her lower jaw was broken in two places, her upper jaw was also fractured. She suffered pulmonary bruising and a traumatic brain injury. She was in intenstive care at University Hospital in New Orleans for about a day and a half then was transferred to Children's Hospital, also in New Orleans, where surgery was performed.

When she came home her physical therapy started. The home-care only gave her about 3 hours a week for treatment. But Ashling was not satisfied. With the help of her dad, her mom, and her sister, she was soon doing 4 to 6 hours a day of her own physical therapy. Her dad said they got the use of a zero gravity treadmill that took all the strain off of her pelvis but allowed her to condition. After 10 weeks of this rigorous  program, she decided to strap on her shoes and run in a local 5K race. She ran a 25 minute 5k after all the pain and suffering . According to Ashling the only pain she really felt was the good pain of muscular action.

Ashling on the left after the 3200 Meter run at State.

Throughout all of this her team and her coach was truly supportive. They visited her in the hospital in New Orleans. The team and her coach, Olan Welch, were with her through the physical therapy. But it was when she returned to school and started training that the support from her coach and teammates really mattered. Ashling says her team supports each other every day, on the course as well as outside of school. They encourage each other to step up not just in athletics but in all aspects of life. Coach Welch says that the team support of each other is a large part of their success. He says he monitors their running and can tell when outside influences are affecting the teams growth. Ashling says it is amazing that Coach knows when to push her and when to tell her to back off in her training. 

Her goals for the season are to finish in the top ten at state and to run as close to her teammate, Brooklyn Biancamano, as possible.  She intends to help her team, Long Beach, win state.  She wants to enjoy running for herself and her team. Ashling's advice to every runner out there is "to never give up, even in the face of adversity; for runners to realize that they can overcome anything with hard work and support."

Ashling Osness Stats

OUTDOORPR: 3:07.69 Graph
3:12.162015 George County Rebel Relays5thFinals>
3:07.69Mobile Challenge of Champions49thFinals>
OUTDOORPR: 5:52.78 Graph
6:35.51MHSAA South State Meet 5A & 6A7thFinals>
5:57.63MHSAA Region 4-5A3rdFinals>
6:01.79MHSAA Division Meet 8-2A and 8-5A3rdFinals>
6:19.97Long Beach Invitational Track & Field Meet5thFinals>
5:52.78Mobile Challenge of Champions25thFinals>
6:11.65All State Relays8thFinals>
6:11.00Gaston Hewes Relays10thFinals>
6:09.6710th annual Bearcat Track & Field Classic4thFinals>
6:30.98MHSAA State Championships 1A/3A/5A7thFinals>
6:11.89MHSAA South State 5A4thFinals>
6:05.31MHSAA Region 4 - 5A3rdFinals>
6:15.32MHSAA Div. 8-5A Track & Field Meet1stFinals>
6:26.20Long Beach Invitational Track & Field Meet4thFinals>
6:07.34Pass High Invitational5thFinals>
6:38.66Mobile Challenge of Champions27thFinals>
6:19.67Arrow Invitational10thFinals>
6:33.389th Annual Bearcat Track & Field Classic4thFinals>
6:38.00MHSAA South State 5a and 6A7thFinals>
6:47.242015 George County Rebel Relays2ndFinals>
INDOORPR: 5:55.23 Graph
5:55.23Last Chance Invitational16thFinals>
6:16.09McNeese High School I16thFinals>
6:00.20LSU High School Classic6thFinals>
OUTDOORPR: 12:23.39 Graph
12:43.59MHSAA State Championships 1A/3A/5A3rdFinals>
13:01.90MHSAA South State Meet 5A & 6A3rdFinals>
13:24.58MHSAA Region 4-5A2ndFinals>
13:31.49MHSAA Division Meet 8-2A and 8-5A1stFinals>
13:23.85Long Beach Invitational Track & Field Meet2ndFinals>
12:23.39Mobile Challenge of Champions11thFinals>
13:21.27All State Relays3rdFinals>
12:44.40Gaston Hewes Relays2ndFinals>
12:46.3810th annual Bearcat Track & Field Classic3rdFinals>
12:56.58MHSAA State Championships 1A/3A/5A5thFinals>
13:04.16MHSAA South State 5A1stFinals>
12:53.24MHSAA Region 4 - 5A1stFinals>
14:12.33MHSAA Div. 8-5A Track & Field Meet1stFinals>
13:34.47Long Beach Invitational Track & Field Meet4thFinals>
13:05.56Pass High Invitational4thFinals>
12:44.83Mobile Challenge of Champions12thFinals>
13:33.94Arrow Invitational7thFinals>
13:50.999th Annual Bearcat Track & Field Classic2ndFinals>
INDOORPR: 12:37.41 Graph
12:48.16Last Chance Invitational10thFinals>
12:56.06McNeese High School I9thFinals>
12:37.41LSU High School Classic7thFinals>
XCPR: 20:20.30 Graph
22:06.78Bearcats Cross-Country Classic7thFinals>
24:14.23George County Trail Run6thFinals>
20:22.00MHSAA 1A-3A-5A State Cross Country Championships2ndFinals>
20:20.30MHSAA Region Championships & District Middle School Championship1stFinals>
21:46.40George County Trail Run4thFinals>
20:35.41MC Watson Ford Invitational4thFinals>
21:45.00Pirate Invitational1stFinals>
21:01.10Bearcats Cross-Country Classic2ndFinals>
21:23.94Biloxi Cross Country Invitational6thFinals>
22:06.70Pascagoula-Gautier Invitational2ndFinals>
20:36.49Mobile Cross Country Challenge of Champions1stFinals>
24:58.90MHSAA 1A-3A-5A State Cross Country Championships41stFinals>
26:32.64District VIII Championships15thFinals>
25:03.00Ocean Springs Invitational53rdFinals>
26:19.00Hancock High School Cross Country Invitational42ndFinals>
24:21.001st Annual Bearcat Cross Country Classic5thFinals>
23:01.10Biloxi Cross Country Invitational22ndFinals>
24:20.80Pascagoula/Gautier Invitational9thFinals>
24:37.10MHSAA State Cross Country Championships45thFinals>
25:06.16West Harrison Invitational28thFinals>
23:43.50Ocean Springs Invitational33rdFinals>
24:21.38St Martin Invitational31stFinals>
25:46.67Spring Hill College Gulf Coast Cross Country Classic33rdFinals>
24:00.00Biloxi Invitational31stFinals>
24:34.73Mobile Cross Country Challenge of Champions46thFinals>