Six days after winning the State Championship in Class 3-A, the Pella boys cross country team is basking in the satisfaction of goals accomplished. The moment is especially satisfying for the team’s seniors, who pushed themselves to get over the hump after two consecutive runner-up finishes. Nathan Buchheit says the squad’s dedication to working toward goals as a team and mental preparation was vital to the success of the Little Dutch runners.
“A couple days before the state meet, we came in and talked about what we wanted to achieve on Saturday,” said Buchheit. “Everyone was on the same page and we set our goals high, so finishing first I don’t think was a big surprise to us, but at the same time we knew we had to go in and give it our best…”
Fellow senior Zach Wittenberg recalled the moment when the team learned that they were indeed State Champions.
“Cutler pulled out the sheet, and he hadn’t looked at it and didn’t know what the results were yet, and he told us the girls’ results. They got fifth, which was awesome,” said Wittenberg. “Then he opened up the next sheet of paper with the boys’ team results on it, and that’s when we realized [we had won], and there was much rejoicing.”
Buchheit and Wittenberg, along with fellow seniors Jon Klein and Chris Myers will run again this weekend in the Senior All-Star Cross Country Meet on the National Championship course at Iowa State University.