Quinta-feira, 18/10/2018 | : : UTC-4
The Reflection

Gull Lake Cross Country team prepares for annual ball run

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Gull Lake Cross Country varsity men’s team: Reed Knapp, Joel Blackburn, Zach Zahrt, Koby Fraaza, Nick Dawson, Nathan Alpers, and Oliver Harnden, warm up for their race at the Holly Invitational. Photo Courtesy of Josie Alpers.

The Gull Lake Cross Country team’s traditional ball run, for the Homecoming football game Friday, is shaping out to be a larger task when compared to previous years. The ball run consists of alternating groups of runners who carry the game-day football from the opposing team’s school (this year, Detroit Country Day) to the home terf of Gull Lake football field

This year, the distance totals a little more than 180 miles and will take the runners two days to finish.

Coach Randy Hunt said what’s difficult in planning a ball run is “coordinating when kids will run, be dropped off, and if they are with friends.”

There is still hope, however, since the most frustrating part of the coach’s job―mapping the route―is already done and out of the way. Coach Hunt completed this task by driving from Detroit Country Day to Gull Lake for the total mileage amount, mapping the route to avoid high-speed driving areas.

Coach Hunt said it was difficult task to keep his runners off of highways and 55 mph roads.

“Previous ball runs were mostly dealing with towns; this one, not so much,” Hunt said about the biggest difference between planning this year’s ball run and previous years.

Although the ball run can sound painful, Hunt said that each runner’s memories of the Gull Lake tradition will last a lifetime and will be a tale to tell for future generations.

Gull Lake Cross Country junior varsity girls, Jayne Flynn, Elly Whitfield, Ruby Risser, Kailey Murphy, Lorelei Hess, and Betsy Martens, begin their race at the Lakeview Invitational. Photo Courtesy of Lucia Shyiak

“Kids love carrying the flag and football; they don’t consider it to be training,” Hunt said.

Runners for the cross country team share the same sentiment.

“[It’s] the best thing that’s ever happened,” senior Tyler Ford said.

Fellow senior David Larson agreed. “I think it’s going to be pretty awesome; can’t wait to run with the lads,” Larson said.

Some runners agree that the worst part about it would be the distance. Though the distance presents itself to be a hardy challenge, some runners said that it was the long mileage of the run that would place it as an all-time great among ball runs.

“This will probably rank as the number one ball for quite some time, unless we run farther next year,” sophomore Koby Fraaza said.

It’s too early to tell how this year’s ball run will play out, but the sheer distance of it has already cemented its legacy in the minds of cross country runners and coaches alike.

 


Justin Walker
About

I’m a senior at Gull Lake High School, and this is my first year on staff. I enjoy writing about our school sports’ programs and other areas as well. Having a deep interest and enjoyment in our English classes at Gull Lake, I’ve decided to pursue a different side of writing by doing newspaper and hope to provide entertaining articles for our viewers. Being involved in sports such as cross country and track, while also being invested to clubs such as Debate and Model UN, I write about topics that affect both myself and classmates.

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