Evart sophomore seeking successful cross country season


EVART — Evart will be relying on experienced cross country runners like Josh Woods to lead the way for the defending champions this season.

This is his sophomore season. Woods benefited from a productive freshman campaign.

“I really enjoyed the state meet last year,” Woods said. “I had a lot of fun going because we got to go as a whole team. It was a lot of fun being there overnight. I had real good memories from last year.”

His best time was a 17:42 which he ran at the state meet. 

“That was a very muddy day,” he said. “We estimated it was 10 to 20 seconds slow. But I still beat my best time by 15 seconds at the state meet.”

For the first part of the summer Woods ran about six miles a day. He also ran track.

“I really enjoyed running the shorter distances,” he said. “After running cross, we run five to six miles a day. Then to run track, I’d go to a race for one mile. That was fun.”

This season, Woods likes his team’s chances.

“We lost quite a few seniors last year,” he said. “But I think we’ll have a good year as a team. We have some new people that have never run before. It will be fun to see them improve. I’m hoping I can personally make it to the state meet. A cool goal would be for our team to win the conference. We’ve won that five years in a row.”

Woods is looking for a time in the low 17-minute range this fall.

“I have to make sure I train hard,” he said. “We have a new training schedule this year. That will help me a lot. A lot of it is mental too. I will make it into a mental game.”

The strongest part of his race is usually the last mile.

“I make it my goal to keep even splits,” he said. “If I have even splits, I can be passing people my last mile.”

Pine River and Beal City are expected to be among Evart’s top opponents in the Highland Conference races.