Mark Twain once said, “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.”
The Wyoming Area Cross Country team will live by this motto for their 2011 season.
The boys will have it much tougher than the girls’ team this fall as the roster consists of just three boys. That means no matter what their times are, the Warriors will not win a match this season.
Wyoming Area Head Coach Paul Leonard is disappointed in the turnout this year, but he is ready to make the best with what he has.
“We lost two kids to graduation and then there are some others who just didn’t come out this year,” Leonard said. “It’s disappointing, because we need at least five runners to score.”
The good news for Wyoming Area is that out of its three runners, only one of them is a senior. Matt Klimas returns for his final season, while Eric Filipiak and Steve Barush return as juniors for the Warriors.
Although they do not have enough runners to compete collectively, individually is a different story. There are plenty of events for the Warriors to excel in this season as individuals.
Leonard feels Filipiak will be this year’s top runner and he is excited about the opportunity for him to get more experience this year.
“Eric returns as one of our top runners,” Leonard said. “I am looking for him to improve as the season goes on and he gets more and more experience.”
Leonard added he hopes both Barush and Klimas improve as the season goes on as well.
The girls’ side of the Wyoming Area Cross Country team is bigger in number, but not by much.
As of now, they will be competing with six girls. They are Sara Radzwilka, Kim Golden, Allison Golden, Angela Coco, Sarah Crake, and Amanda Ostrowski.
Leonard expects Radzwilka to be the top runner for the Lady Warriors this season. She had great success last spring on the Wyoming Area track team. As a junior, she won the district championship for the 800m event. She returns as a senior and should be a force in the Wyoming Valley Conference.
“Sara will be our top runner this season,” Leonard said. “She has improved each year and I expect her to do really well this season.”
Unlike the boys’ team, the girls’ squad has enough runners to compete collectively as a team. Leonard would like to see the girls get at least to .500 on the season.
“A realistic goal would be around .500,” Leonard said. “I would like to see us win more meets than we lose.”
The competition began yesterday for the Wyoming Area runners with the annual Cliff Robbins Invitational event, which took place at Misericordia University. In addition the Warriors and Lady Warriors will also compete in the WVC Coaches Meet on October 19, which is also at Misericordia. The District 2 Championships will be held on October 26.