Girls cross country excited to start fast


Jesse Bond

Junior Phoebe Liccardo prepares for upcoming meet.

Chris Werner, Sports Editor

It’s not often that a high school team gets the chance to have a national champion on its roster, but that will be the case this year for Evanston’s girls cross country team as senior Enyaeva Michelin continues to put ETHS on the map.

“It’s an amazing accomplishment,” cross country coach Rosette Ochoa said. “It’s cool for the track program, she’s really putting a name to that. I think it will transfer over to our season.”

Senior Enyaeva Michelin won the USATF National Junior Olympic Championships in the 1500 meter 17-18 year old division this offseason after running a personal best time of four minutes and 32.81 seconds. She won the race by over eight seconds.

Michelin will use this early success as a springboard into the cross country season.

“This year in track, I focused on the 800 meters, which is only half of a mile. This summer my coach and I made the change of going up in distance specifically to prepare for cross country,” Michelin said.

The team’s first test will come at the Red Devil Invite at Katherine Legge Park on Sept. 2 at 9 am.

The Kits placed eighth in the event last season with a score of 182 points in an 18 team field that featured conference foes New Trier, Niles West and Highland Park.

“We just keep trying to place higher and higher throughout the year,” Ochoa said. “I would love for the girls to aim for a higher place than eighth.”

The course at Legge Park is also one of the tougher courses the girls will face during the season.

“There are some pretty good inclines and it is typically one of the hotter days that we have,” Ochoa said.

Last year the team was led in the event by Michelin, who came in eleventh overall tallying a time of 18 minutes 30 seconds over the 3.1 mile course.

Michelin said that with the loss of three graduated seniors, including last year’s captain Emma Dzwierzynski, she will have a larger role on the team this season.

“I’m a captain this year,” Michelin said. “So I hope to take more of leadership role especially with the younger girls who I’ve been training with during track season.”

One of those underclassmen is sophomore Gabby Horton. Horton was on the varsity team as a freshman and recorded an impressive time of 19 minutes 47 seconds at last season’s Savage Invite to finish 19 overall.

“Enyaeva was my training partner this summer, and she’s gotten really good,” Horton said.

Another underclassmen who has been working hard on her skills in the offseason is rising sophomore Eavan Norman.

Norman recorded a time of 20 minutes 1.2 seconds for a 54 place finish individually at last year’s Red Devil Invite.

With the group of talented underclassmen making their way up and Michelin’s great offseason, the team has high expectations for the season.