Aisling Cuffe's MileSplit.us Journal #4
Hey guys, it’s Aisling again. Time for another journal. The last time I wrote, I hadn’t raced in the Ridgewood Invite that my team went to. Two weeks later, a lot has happened. It’s funny to think that 2 weeks can change so much, but they did. Here it is!
The Tuesday after the Ridgewood weekend, I “raced” in our Division 3 championships, held at my school. It was our senior day, so all the seniors got to make a stride out when their name got called. I didn’t think it would be as emotional for me, (seeing as I don’t particularly like my home course), but it was! I really think I would have cried right there if the gun wasn’t about to go off. Just seeing all of the teachers and the cross country parents and the siblings out to watch the last home meet was great, even though it reminded me that this was the last cross country race for me in Cornwall ever! For the race, I only had a few specific goals in mind- 1) I didn’t want to go all out (more like a tempo pace), because I didn’t want my body to feel like it had just been through another race; 2) I wanted to break my course record from last year (which had been 18:19 for three miles); and 3) I wanted to break 18, to avenge my one downfall from last year (this course had been the only course I didn’t break 18 minutes on last year, so this year I wanted a clean sweep). Unfortunately for my 3rd goal, I got 18:11. It’s weird (actually, more like completely abnormal) to go into a race with goals of “don’t tire yourself” and “beat this time”, but I find that I do this a lot. What made up for this failed goal was hearing all of the home fans cheer for me one last time as I came down the final stretch. That was a great day for everyone on the team as well. Our division isn’t too competitive, but for the first time ever to my knowledge (which is limited to about 5, maybe 6 years tops of Cornwall history), Cornwall girls scored a perfect 15 points! Seeing how well my young teammates came together, and were able to race as a team to get 15 points made me so happy. It was the perfect ending to senior’s day.
That following Thursday, I left in the evening for my 3rd college visit to Stanford. No one warned me back in September when I planned out the visit that Homecoming weekend would be moved to 2 weeks later than normal, but it was. And so you see the conflict. It wasn’t an end of the world conflict though. If you ask anyone at my school, you will know that I don’t really care that much for school dances. I just don’t enjoy getting dressed up and dancing. What I did miss was the fall pep-rally, which is always the best pep rally of the year. Every team goes all out to be the greenest, most-matching team. Sparkles and ribbons litter the locker rooms before school starts on Friday. Everyone screams and cheers so loud, and when the Principal talks, you just feel inspired to go out there with the football team and help score a touchdown! I would have been a little sad to miss this, but then everything turned for the worse- I was nominated for Homecoming Queen! All of the nominees play a part in the festivities of Pep Rally day, and are pretty much required to be at the dance, just in case they win. So of course, with my luck, I was informed by my friends Saturday night while enjoying myself in Palo Alto that I won homecoming queen, and when they announced my name, no one really knew where I was, and it had been a little awkward… I am probably the first homecoming queen ever to not attend homecoming.
So, I was sad (and feeling a little guilty) that I missed both the Pep Rally and Homecoming, especially because I am one of the major athletes at my school. But Stanford was an amazing experience, and if I had known back in September that it would have conflicted with Homecoming, I would have done the same thing over again. Not everyone gets the opportunity to go on an Official Visit to Stanford. My host was Tori Pennings, who ran for one of Cornwall’s rivals, Warwick. This connects perfectly into…
Counties! Counties were the following Friday at Bear Mountain. I don’t particularly like the course because 1)It is all pavement(except for the start and finish), and 2) There is one huge hill in the middle, whose condition is very deteriorated, and actually kinda dangerous. My team had a very good chance of winning, along with Monroe and Warwick. Happily, I got the course record that had been held by my one of my idols, Aislinn Ryan, who had been a Foot Locker Champ in 2004. Unhappily, my team lost by 6 points. What’s more is that our 5th girl fell going down the dangerous downhill after the huge incline, and cut up her legs pretty bad. She got up and finished as our 5th girl (which I am still so proud of her for doing). On a normal day, she would have been right with our 3rd and 4th girl. For the circumstances, I am still very proud of my team. We have two races left together for cross country, and I still can’t believe it’s almost over. Wherever I go to college, one of the things I will miss the most is this team.
I wrote a lot this time, but a lot did happen! See you later!
Editor's Note: Aislinn Ryann's course record was 16:35.4, which Aisling broke by just under 8 seconds, with a time of 16:27.56.
Me finishing the Division Championships, missing my sub-18 goal, but getting to run in front of the home crowd. This will definitely be one of my favorite memories of all time.
The Cornwall Girls Team during our very intense cool down (fine, fine… it was my fault for bringing my camera). Megan (the girl wearing the shorts) is the victim of the Bear Mountain Hill (and probably won’t be able to wear long pants for a week).
Mikayla (on the left) and I, the two lone seniors on the Varsity Team, make our final stand at Bear Mountain (at the OCIAA championships, anyway)