Belvidere North girls thankful to have a cross country season

Published: Sep. 7, 2020 at 9:47 PM CDT
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - While we and high schools continue to adjust to the new fall sports schedule... Belvidere North girls cross country also has to make changes to how it runs its season. Just like other teams, the Blue Thunder always builds toward state. But there won’t be a meet at Detweiler Park this year.

Belvidere North hosted its first cross country meet for the boys and girls over the weekend. The Blue Thunder ran against Auburn and Freeport in a NIC-10 Triangular. North won the team title by default because the Knights and Pretzels did not have enough girls to qualify for a team score. That’s just one of the many differences this year as teams adjust to smaller meets. Sydnie Elder led the way for the Blue Thunder at Saturday’s meet. The senior won the race by 26 seconds. She is just happy to have her senior season.

“Usually, we go three or four meets, and then we have pre-conference and that’s the first time we see our conference. But we’re used to having at least 10 teams there on the start line, you have people everywhere. But, it’s just a different dynamic and we’re going to make the most of it,” said Elder. “Just do what we can and get in as much as we can. I’m just thankful for what we have. There’s a lot of people that aren’t even getting to do their sport right now. So, I’m just really glad that we get to do what we’ve been working for all summer.”

North is coming off its seventh NIC-10 title in eight years and a seventh-place finish in Class 2A. The Blue Thunder will rely heavily on Elder to help navigate a young squad. Elder said she learned how to be a leader from former teammates like Madison Diercks and Gianna Sagona.

“Sydnie’s great, as far as, not just on the field, but in practice, she’s a role model for the girls,” said head coach Drew Pivoras. “She really is encouraging to all the girls at all the age levels.”

“I just follow what the people ahead of me have done. You know, work hard, set an example, and just really build that dynamic of friendship on the team. Make everyone feel as welcome as they can and heard. And if they need anything, just that they know that they can come to me or any of the other seniors on the team.”

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