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The Greyhound

The Greyhound

The Student News Site of Loyola University Maryland

The Greyhound

Community and Patience – Exactly What It Takes to Cross the Finish Line

Read more to jump into two Loyola Cross Country athletes’ sneakers!
Rich Schultz/ Stockton Photo

Loyola Cross Country Coach Amy Horst has assisted her athletes in finding their own recipe for success this fall season, which she believes is different for everyone. Although she has a plan in place that she devised for her team over the summer, it is not everything that is needed to succeed in this sport. The team must continue to acquire patience and take small strides toward a larger end goal. Horst sees the competitions leading up to the championship as preparation since the championship race is what determines the Patriot League winner. She hopes to help every runner in keeping their eyes focused on each step instead of the whole staircase. 

She said, “Each athlete has to do the things they need to do and no one else can run the race for them. At the same time, it’s intensely a team sport and so keeping that balance with them and helping them to understand that there’s differences that they need to do is important.” 

Camden Spring ’24 is entering his fourth year of running for Loyola. He agrees with Horst that having patience is a very important part of cross country.  

He said, “We want gratification right now and want to be racing as fast as we can right now, but I think as a program, we’re learning that it’s okay to be patient and it’s okay to peak at the right time and have a really good race at Patriot Leagues and the rest of them in a sense don’t really matter.” 

Kasey Boag ’25 has been a part of Loyola’s Cross-Country team for three years. She looks back at her personal strategies for achievement and reveals that having the right mindset has gone a long way for her. She also acknowledges the fact that running a race is not an easy feat. However, you can physically feel the pain while still remaining mentally strong.

She said, “When you’re running a race, it’s easy to think about how much it hurts and how much longer you have to go. Having a mindset of trusting your training and knowing that everything you’ve done leading up to this has set you up for success is important and I use the people and teammates around myself to just motivate myself and have a positive mindset going forward and not think about what has already happened.”  

Boag explains that the women’s side of the team has built a solid foundation of friendship. A part of these relationships includes holding each other accountable. They are not just present together for races but also in every moment of preparation beforehand. They motivate one another to lace up their sneakers and show up day after day. 

She said, “We are not just showing up for ourselves but we’re showing up for each other too because we care about each other. What you do affects everyone else.”

When Spring looks at the men’s side, he also thinks of the strong connection that they share.  He said this bond is not only good for their spirits, but is also a motivator that aids them in giving their best for each other. Additionally, these friendships have served as a rock for Spring and given him a bit of calm before a race. 

He said, “I try to stay grounded with the guys that I’m with next to me and my teammates. I think a lot of the times when you’re going into a race, a lot of nerves can get you really riled up, so I just try to stay calm, stay grounded, and kind of treat it like it’s just another day with the guys in the office.”

Spring recalls the team’s trip to Minnesota this season and cherishes that memory. A portion of the team, eight men and eight women, took this flight so that they could race at the Roy Griak Invitational. In fact, Spring placed in the top 150 finishers for this race. Those who did not compete here would compete at the Paul Short Run Invitational in Pennsylvania. Hosted by a teammate’s aunt and uncle, the group got to spend quality time together in a new state while also participating in the race there.  

He said, “I just haven’t had that type of opportunity to get on a plane with the team and fly somewhere and have that atmosphere, so that was really cool. It was also really cool to race in a different race, see some different teams, and kind of get that really cool experience there.”  

Coach Horst expresses her fondness for the team and believes that they bring fun and joy into everything they do. They make her job enjoyable, and she cannot wait to come to work every day especially when she can get a good laugh or smile out of practice time. 

She said, “The guys showed up the other day wearing our old uniforms from like 2013 to a workout and it wasn’t just that they did it, it was the way they presented which was hysterical. It was a good day and we’re finding those fun pieces in really hard work they’re doing and finding that success and that’s spectacular.”

You can keep up with the Cross-Country team on their Instagram as they go on to participate in the Eastern College Athletic Championships in New York on Oct. 13. 

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