I sent out the list of athletes to be voted on to a number of people in our MileSplit community and asked them to vote on our athletes. Only Three have responded to my Email request. I guess no one cares about our athletes. I will not be awarding AOY of the year for this Cross Country Season. It was a different way not a popularity contest the way most of our polls worked. I tried not to pick people that had an athlete in the poll but messed and that person actually wrote me back and disqualified herself from the voting.
Kinda discouraged on this Saturday after Thanksgiving.
Our true athletes of the year as nominated. But not enough votes.
Brock Kelly, Tupelo Christian, Junior 16:11 - From his Coach - I'm nominating Brock Kelly from TCPS. He had the second fastest overall time of the year (16:11) and the fastest time overall at the State meet (16:33). He won the 1A championship by over 30 seconds and led a 1A boys championship team that was #3 over ALL classifications. Also overcame a disastrous State Meet last year where he passed out.
Wesley Green, Hickory Flat, Sophomore 17:05 - From a Coach - We would love for Wesley to be on this list. His times have dropped a good bit this year. He would have won in 2A and 3A. He has closed the gap on Brock Kelly from the start of the year to the end. He is also planning running on running the St Jude 1/2 marathon in December.
David Adams, Pearl, Senior 16:40 - From a competitor - I highly suggest that David Adams from Pearl High School should be nominated. He's not only a outstanding runner, but an amazing leader also. He has a pr of 16:40 from the Jesse Owens Classic this year. I really look up to him. He is an exception leader and a mini coach. He helped train and helped other runners during off seasons and some weekends or holidays. David has helped me(Clay Derrick) how to never give up and never shorten yourself from greatness. He also shares the stories with us from his Pearl coaches. Before every race with him, He goes down the line wishing everyone luck. One guy before the regional race told David this is his first cross country race. David talked to him and said, " I will be with you every step of the way and I will motivate you all the way. David told me to go for the win while he sacrifice and run with the guy to help him hit a good first time. David is a leader who don't just think about himself, but he likes to help others to get them to where he is. He is always positive and has a smile on his face. Please nominate David Adams from Pearl High School!
Cade Robinson, Walnut, Senior, 17:50 - From his Coach - Cade is a Senior at Walnut high school and is one of the founding members of the XC program. In Cade's first year of running he had times that varied between 29:25.05 and 22:50.80. Last year he posted times between 22:10.70 and 20:25.00. But this year Cade found a new commitment to his team. He posted times from 20:33.66 to 18:50.00. He began running on his own and attempting to push himself pass the comfortable and get the best out of his running. Not only was Cade one of Walnut's best runners, he began to go into the school and find runners that would help his team for this year. He "recruited" runners that he knew would push him and push the other boys on the team. He "recruited" runners that beat him this year with their times but he was unconcerned with this because he was just attempting to provide great leadership for his team and have them competing for a State Championship, which they did this year. Walnut Finished second in 2A this year by the grit and determination of the boys that Cade had "recruited" and also help mentor to run their best. This year's team had 5 All-State performers and Cade was a big part of the leadership that led to this change in the team. In the first year the team finished 11th, last they finished 6th, and as stated before this year 2nd. Cade Robinson would be a great choice for XC Athelete of the Year.
Cole Benoit, Pearl River, Senior, 15:43 - Another Coach - I have enjoyed watching Cole run on the Coast this year (and years past). He is very supportive of Brooklyn's (Biancamano) success, occasionally giving her advice. He is an admirable athlete always showing great sportsmanship. I have never seen him display disappointment. And of course, he leads the state with his time.
Dylan Allen, Mooreville, Senior, 16:43 - From your editor - A great senior and competitor. After a great start to the season he went through a series of illnesses that could have led to just recuperating and waiting on outdoor track. Not Dylan he came back and continued to train and run. He won the Class 4A title by 35 seconds in 16:50 which was his fastest time after recovering.
Brooklyn Biancamano, Long Beach, Freshman, 17:58 - By several Coaches - Number one ranked runner in Mississippi and her 17:58 was run on the State Meet course. Won Class 5A by 50 seconds in the fastest time for girls at 18:10.
Katelyn Cartwright, Hernando, Senior, 19:00 - By other Coaches - Number two runner in the state, Won Class 6A as a repeat champion. She is a leader on her team and runs to her best ability every time she competes.
Madilynn Vuncannon, Walnut, 8th Grade 21.29 - By her Coach - Madilynn is an 8th grader that placed 8th in 2A last year and 6th in 2A this year at the state championships. This year Madilynn posted her season best time at the Jesse Owens Classic by placing 11th with the time of 21:29.88. Madilynn has truly stepped in to the XC team and provided leadership even at her young age. She attempts to pace the runners that struggle with understanding pace as well as providing the best time for her team that she can post. Not only does she run XC during this time and provide leadership there she was playing and practicing Volleyball with the varsity and junior varsity teams. Madilynn also practices 2 a days with the junior high and high school basketball teams during this team. This requires Madilynn to, at times during the XC year, practice on her own and run without her team around her. Madilynn also provides "energy" for the boys team as they are running as when she finishes her race she is the first one at the boxes telling them about the course and finding places to stand and cheer them on as they are competing. Madilynn would be a great choice for XC Athlete of the Year because she not only excelled on the course but also in the classroom maintaining all A's and also in other sports.
Allison Hanby, Tupelo Christian, Junior, 21:14 - By her Coach - She won the 1A girls in 21:14 and overcame a similar situation as Brock that happened three years ago. She's a five time all state runner and led our girls to the state title this year.
Mia Card, Baldwyn, 7th Grade 19:42 - By her coach - This 12 year old girl ran against girls 4-6 years older than her and dominated most every race by MINUTES! She has beaten the1A state champ) by 1 minute in both races she faced her. After placing 3rd at the Tupelo Invitational she went on to win her next 5 races and beating the 4A state champ two more times in the regular season. At Saltillo she smoked beat the 3A State Champ Sierra and then won her region by 1:50 seconds. While Mia fell short at the state meet after battling nerves and hyperventilation she still somehow finished second and hung with Britt even though her eyes were trying to shut down on her after mile 2.