Sports

Mid-Prairie: state champions

Golden Hawks claimed team title for 3rd consecutive year

ANGELINA EVANS
ANGELINA EVANS
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FT. DODGE — While Marie Hostetler was the individual winner of the Class 2A Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union cross-country meet Saturday, Nov. 2, at Lakeside Municipal Golf Course, she was also a part of a team championship.

Often those team members get overlooked when the team has a consistent race winner on the roster, but it takes all seven runners as well as other team members and coaches to produce consistent championships that the Golden Hawks have accomplished.

Mid-Prairie won by a single point over Williamsburg.

“Our girls ran an extremely disciplined race to barely nip an excellent team in Williamsburg,” Mid-Prairie head coach Mark Hostetler said.

“We train all season with the state course in mind, especially the hills in the middle mile, and our hill running has been fantastic all season long,” Mid-Prairie assistant coach Aaron Fleming said. “We have a specific training regimen that we have used each postseason for about five years now and we’ve had solid results at state.”

Hostetler has been honored as coach of the year and Fleming as assistant coach of the year in the past.

Today and tomorrow, the Union takes a look at the other members of the 2019 Mid-Prairie state champions with a question-and-answer session with each of them by email. The questions will appear in bold.

“Sydney Yoder moved up 30 places in the last mile to score against Williamsburg for the first time all year,” Coach Hostetler said. “Angelina Evans and Jaden Yoder had solid races.”

Sydney Yoder is a sophomore. She was the fifth-place finisher among the Mid-Prairie team, completing her five-kilometer race in 20 minutes, 31.6 seconds. She earned 21 team points and placed 33rd overall.

Angelina Evans is a senior. She was the sixth-place finisher among the Mid-Prairie girls team. She finished 49th overall and 29th in the team race. Her time was 20 minutes, 59.6 seconds.

Jaden Yoder was the seventh-place finisher among the Mid-Prairie girls team. She is a sophomore. She finished 63rd overall and 39th in the team race. Her time was 21 minutes, 15.3 seconds.

Sydney Yoder

What is the feeling like of being a state champion?

It feels amazing to have accomplished what we worked so hard for during the summer and regular season. All those practices that were really hard paid off and that feels really good. I’m so privileged to be a part of such a talented, hardworking, and awesome team.

How did the coaches make you a better runner?

My coaches are awesome! They believed in me and pushed me to run faster that I thought I could. They knew exactly what workouts and strategies were best, which made it way less stressful for me, since it was my first year. They are super encouraging and supportive and the best coaches I could ask for!

How much did you want that title and did that want make you train harder?

I really wanted to win for my team, coaches, and most importantly, to give glory to God. So when I didn’t feel like running, I pushed myself harder and ‘pressed on for the goal’.

How much does it help to have a state champion like Marie Hostetler on your team?

It really helps a lot to have Marie on the team. I feel more confident when I’m running to see her leading the pack during a race. She works hard every practice and it makes me want to work harder too.

In what ways did Marie Hostetler help your training?

Marie helps my training by answering all the questions I have about running and she knows the courses we run on and can point out the best way to run them when we walk the course. She’s also really encouraging and always supported me in my goals.

What was the best part of this season before state?

I think the best part was just hanging out with the team after practice and meets because our team is super fun to be around! :)

What was the low point and how did you overcome it?

At the Solon meet I went out too fast at the beginning and had to be pulled out of the race. The next race I barely finished because at the end of the race I was so dizzy I couldn’t walk straight. This was because I was deficient in a few of the food elements you need as a runner. As we were figuring out what foods I needed, I injured my ankle and couldn’t run at our next meet (Hillcrest). I was pretty down until finally Coach told me I could try to run and I was super excited. Everyone was happy I was back and my motivation and determination returned.

Angelina Evans

What is the feeling like of being a state champion?

It feels amazing, because it was a true miracle that we accomplished that goal.

How did the coaches make you a better runner?

Knowing that they believed in me and in my team really helped me to push myself through the season. Their lectures before practice helped me understand how to run the race, how to test my limits and how to become better in running and in other aspects of life. They also wanted cross-country practice to be fun and not just strict all the time. We did have grueling days that were not fun, but many of the days, the coaches made practice nice and jolly.

How much did you want that title and did that want make you train harder?

In the summer I knew that getting the title again would not be easy, but I wanted it very badly for my team and worked to cut my times down from last year. I also knew that getting on varsity would be much harder this year because many of the girls were running much faster than our varsity girls last year. I wanted to run at state again and that also drove me to train harder than my first year in cross-country.

How much does it help to have a state champion like Marie Hostetler on your team?

It helps a lot because through the season she was able to maintain the first spot on our team and get the minimum score in the races, so we didn’t have to worry about gaining points at our first runner.

In what ways did Marie Hostetler help your training?

Many times during the hard days I would feel like I had so many post hard-run exercises and I felt overwhelmed, but Marie would come in after running more than all the other girls and hit the weights. I could see on her face that she was so tired, but she still did them. That really helped me feel better because it made me think that if Marie could do all that, than I could too.

What was the best part of this season before state?

Running at the Cedar Rapids Prairie meet and seeing the team’s summer training pay off.

What was the low point and how did you overcome it?

Definitely after the second meet of the season, which was in Pella. I felt really good the first mile, but somewhere in the second mile I began to have trouble breathing. I became really anxious so I mentally and physically gave up. If I would have just stayed focused, my race would have been so good. Afterward, I felt guilty for losing control and not setting a good example for my teammates. We ended up winning as a team, and I was one second from my PR, but I felt so defeated and I was angry at myself for running the way I did. I did not want to run anymore cross-country races. I wanted to quit.

My mom talked to me for a long time. She told me that I needed to stop going back and forth in my opinion of cross-country; I needed to either quit now or finish out the season strong and hard, with a good attitude. After thinking and praying I made the decision to keep running cross-country, I would try my best to run how God would want me to run: having a more grateful attitude when I didn’t do as well as I wanted to.

Jaden Yoder

What is the feeling like of being a state champion?

It’s very exciting because we worked hard all year long and now we get to enjoy the results of our work.

How did the coaches make you a better runner?

The coaches made me a better runner by having workouts that improved my ability in different areas, always believing in me, and telling me I could do more than I ever thought I could.

How much did you want that title and did that want make you train harder?

I really wanted to three-peat at state. We all did. I didn’t really think about training hard because we just did it.

How much does it help to have a state champion like Marie Hostetler on your team?

It really helps to have Marie on our team because of the low score she adds to the team score, but it’s not just because of that. It is also because she is an encouraging teammate who is a great friend.

In what ways did Marie Hostetler help your training?

When I look at how much Marie trains, I see how much better I could be if I trained harder.

What was the best part of this season before state?

The best part of the season before state was all the time I got to spend with my teammates, the River Valley Conference meet, and when I got my personal record at Districts.

What was the low point and how did you overcome it?

My low point was in the middle of the season when my times weren’t as good. I really wanted to get better times, and eventually I did, thankfully.