Senior competes at state cross country meet

Addy Wachter, Photo Editor

Senior Carter Larned made it to the state cross country meet. Even though it was his first year running cross country in high school, he was the only one in the program to make it to the state meet this year. Larned ran a 16:33 on a muddy course on a windy day, placing 77th in D1 in the state of Michigan.

“For me I felt like it went great,” Larned said. “I accomplished what I wanted to do and had a great time while doing it.”

Larned, the only senior on varsity, was all-conference and all-region, he was the team’s most valuable runner and he won academic all state. With his personal record of 16:11, Larned is the 8th fastest 5k runner in Grand Haven High School history.

“Early on in the season, he was hitting the 17:40s but he wanted to be way faster than that,” assistant coach William Hewitt said. “Then he had a big breakout race at one of the conference meets where he saw what he could do. From then on, it was him improving every single week and just pushing the ceiling once he figured out how to break that barrier.”

Going from playing soccer in the fall for the past three years to running cross country instead was a major change for Larned, but he used his frustration from this change to push him to become a more motivated runner and he became faster because of it.

“I am just really competitive and getting cut from soccer, I wanted to show the soccer coaches that I could be just as successful if not more successful in cross country,” Larned said. “Whenever I was really struggling, I just thought of soccer and I would get a new burst of energy.”

Larned’s frustration from soccer and natural skill are not the only reasons to why he was so successful this season. His resilience, grit and willingness to put his foremost effort into everything he works for is what put Larned at the top of the team. 

“Someone who was cut from soccer and could have pouted but instead the next day he comes out and finds himself all conference and all region, just speaks to how resilient he is,” Hewitt said. “He never has a bad race because he won’t let himself have a bad race, he will grind through any pain, any obstacle and he will give his best effort no matter what.”