Girls Sports Profile: Gabby Sherwood

Girls Cross Country Captain reflects on the start of a successful season.

Coach+Susan+Ashton+talks+to+girls+varsity+cross-country+runners%2C+giving+them+advice+before+their+race+on+Sept.+14+at+the+Vista+Ridge+Invitational+meet.+Photo+by+Thomas+Melina+Raab.+
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Girls Sports Profile: Gabby Sherwood

Coach Susan Ashton talks to girls varsity cross-country runners, giving them advice before their race on Sept. 14 at the Vista Ridge Invitational meet. Photo by Thomas Melina Raab.

Coach Susan Ashton talks to girls varsity cross-country runners, giving them advice before their race on Sept. 14 at the Vista Ridge Invitational meet. Photo by Thomas Melina Raab.

Thomas Melina Raab.

Coach Susan Ashton talks to girls varsity cross-country runners, giving them advice before their race on Sept. 14 at the Vista Ridge Invitational meet. Photo by Thomas Melina Raab.

Thomas Melina Raab.

Thomas Melina Raab.

Coach Susan Ashton talks to girls varsity cross-country runners, giving them advice before their race on Sept. 14 at the Vista Ridge Invitational meet. Photo by Thomas Melina Raab.

Sarah Slaten, Sports Editor

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The Shield: How long have you been doing cross country?

Gabby Sherwood: Since junior year. I started a full season junior year. I ran the district meet during freshman year, but that didn’t really count, and I ran on JV. But I joined last year as a junior, and I really liked it.

TS: And you’re captain now this year?

GS: Yes! I’m captain of the girls varsity team. Before the season started this year, I went to coach and told her that I would be interested in being a co-captain of some sort to lead the girls and encourage them. I really like it; it’s great to just be able to encourage younger girls because I’m one of the older people, and a lot of them are sophomores and freshman, so I just like being there for them and encouraging them, and leading them. It’s not really about being the fastest; it’s about being a good teammate. And I think I’ve been doing a good job.

TS: What’s your favorite part about cross country?

GS: I think my favorite part is definitely the community of people we have. It’s really hard to get up every morning at 5 a.m. and run, but the people there make it worth it because the people there are very encouraging. They always make me laugh. I think that’s my favorite part—the people.

TS: And you were training over the summer right? How did that go?

GS: It was definitely challenging, but actually summer practice really helps, the training, the three months of it, is a really helpful preseason because it takes a while to get used to running miles and miles and building up your endurance, and summer practices really helped with that. I also did extra stuff—every day I would go to cross country in the morning and then later I would do speed and strength and sprints, so that really helped me build up my strength from running.

I really like it; it’s great to just be able to encourage younger girls because I’m one of the older people”

— Gabby Sherwood

TS: Are you excited for this year?

GS: I am! We have a lot of great young runners; it’s going to be a very young team next year because a lot of seniors are graduating, but they all are fast and are natural runners, so hopefully they stick with it till their senior year.

TS: What’s your favorite part about the meets?

GS: They’re always really fun. I love getting to experience each new course because every race is different. So I try not to get discouraged if I have a bad race because maybe that course had more hills or was more rocky. But it’s great to have a solid girls varsity team because we’re there for each other and can push each other during the race.

TS: What is your favorite memory so far this year?

GS: Something that I enjoyed is that it’s become a tradition (started last year) that at practice the day before a meet, we do an easy run and ice baths, and it’s become a tradition that a parent and a runner will bring tacos and juice and fruit, so we get to enjoy our breakfast after an easy run. It’s just a fun activity, and I think it eases nerves about the meet the next day because we’re all talking and joking around and just having fun as a team.

Part of cross country is failure; you’re not always going to run your fastest race every meet; you’ll have set backs and injuries, but you have to keep pushing.”

— Gabby Sherwood

TS: How has the season been going so far?

GS: The season has been going pretty well. As a whole, we are growing as a team, and everyone is putting in a lot of effort at practices. Everyone had a rough race at the Hays meet this past weekend—personally, I was sick, and I know several of my teammates were injured or not feeling well. But it was just one race; I know that by the end of the season everyone’s hard work will pay off. I was pretty disappointed in my time this weekend (28:07) because it was the slowest time I’ve ever run. But I was sick, and I’m feeling better now so I’m trying to stay positive and look towards the next goal—the McNeil meet this Saturday. Part of cross country is failure; you’re not always going to run your fastest race every meet; you’ll have set backs and injuries, but you have to keep pushing.

TS: What are you doing as team captain?

GS: As a team, it’s that point in the season where it starts to get a little harder to come to practice; you start to feel a little more exhausted. I know that everyone else feels it, so as a captain I’m going to try my best to encourage everyone at practices and tell them I’m proud of them for keeping with it and not giving up.

BOTTOM: Senior captain Gabby Sherwood chases down other runners at the Lockhart Hippensteel Cross Country Invitational meet on Aug. 31. Photo by Thomas Melina Raab.

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