PBHS low on runners, but has some talent

Peabody-Burns High School cross-country coach Kim Topham may not have enough athletes to compete in team competition, but she is returning some runners with talent.

With only four boys out for the team so far this season, the Warriors will need to find at least one more runner if they hope to be eligible to repeat the school?s third-place finish at the Class 2A state race in 2009.

The girls have three runners, two short of the five required for team competition.

Senior Lauren Pickens returns from a sixth-place individual finish at the 2A state race. Pickens has accumulated nine 2A state track gold medals at 100, 200 and 400 meters, but finishing so high over a 4-kilometer course surprised most onlookers.

With no team competition, Warrior runners will focus on individual goals, according to Topham.

?I let them set their goals,? she said. ?Then I will visit with each one of them individually and tell them if I think their goal is what they need to do or if I think they need to push themselves harder.?

Not having a full team won?t restrict PBHS?s participation in meets.

?We?ll be able to go to all of our meets and participate,? Topham said. ?If we end up not having a full boys? team, it will free me up to split them and run junior varsity and varsity.?

The Warriors open their season Sept. 2 at Clearwater.