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Athlete of the Week: Annika Mellquist

Paris Gockley, Sports Editor

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On November 7, Annika Mellquist was congratulated with the Athlete of the Week for her outstanding performance during the cross country season. She placed 3rd on the team in the second league meet win, and improved upon her time from last year’s Clovis Invitational by over a minute, running the 5K course in 19 minutes. Annika was “excited” when she discovered she was picked to be Athlete of the Week, and shared a few of her favorite moments of the cross country season.

“I have a strong work ethic, but I have to thank my high intakes of chocolate and coffee for getting me through workouts and races,” Annika said, claiming she was most proud of “… how our team made it all the way to state last year, and we’re planning to qualify this Saturday as well.” Annika stated that she has many favorite moments throughout the season, and it was difficult to pinpoint just one, but that she loves “…team dinners before the meets. It’s all you can eat pasta and garlic bread.” Cross country hasn’t been all food and fun, however. “One of the hard points through my season was when I got shin splints from running so often. This was hard since the only way to heal them was rest, but I had to keep running,” Annika said.

Annika gave some advice to potential runners who wish to improve their times, “My best advice is to eat chocolate before races, because even though everyone tells me it makes me slower I strive to prove them wrong.” And it seems she has, but she still wishes to improve, like any dedicated athlete, “One of my biggest goals by the end of the season is to go under 19 minutes for my 5k since I hit 19:00 which was just part of a second off. Also, I hope this year’s team and next year’s can qualify for state again since that’s such a great running experience.” Good luck!

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