On Your Mark, Get Set, Go!

A well-balanced team with strong individuals lead to a high performing season, despite a few injuries.

By Klair Vogel

The Iola High School cross country team had a good season this fall.

The boys’ team placed at almost every meet this year, taking first in Fort Scott, Central Heights and Iola. The boys were seen as strong contenders for the Bill Hill Invitational, but the Parsons meet got rained out and was rescheduled for the same day as a home football game. Most of the team could not go because of band or injuries. The Independence meet also was rained out after the team arrived.

The girls’ team took second place at Fort Scott and third at Central Heights.

One runner in particular stood out during his last high school season. Senior Kohl Endicott took first in four of his races, including at the Pioneer League meet, and placed 12th at regionals, qualifying as an individual for state. At state, Kohl placed 62 out of 106 runners.

The 2014 boys’ cross country team also included seniors Travis Hermstein, Blaine Klubek, and Jonathan Tidd; junior Yohon Sinclair; and sophomores Braden Plumlee, Isaiah Fawson, Kendall Jay and Ryan Eyster. Sinclair and Eyster both had their seasons cut short by injuries. Iola’s top five runners were Endicott, Klubek, Hermstein, Plumlee and Fawson.

Competing on the girls’ side of things were senior Jo Lohman, juniors Abigail Taylor and Klair Vogel, sophomore Megan Klubek, and freshmen Addie Prather, and Olivia Taylor.

Coach Smith said he was quite impressed with the all the runners’ work this season.

The coaches for the team this season were Marv Smith and Becky Carlson. Smith said at the beginning of the season that this would be his last year of coaching cross country, but as the season went on he said that he may stay with the program another year, on top of his 50 years of coaching.

“This has been an outstanding season this year,” Smith said.