As has been the norm for the last four years, Madison White again had a race for the record books in leading the Bear River varsity girls cross country team to their best performance ever at the 4A State Championships held Wednesday, Oct. 21 at Cedar City High School.
In her final race as a Bear, White took fifth place with a personal-best time of 18 minutes, 45 seconds, breaking her own previous school record (18:49). The podium finish came a week after White took second at the Region 11 championships in Cache Valley.
“Madi will be the first to tell you she wasn’t satisfied with her place or time, but considering she was going through some tough times physically the last two weeks, she just keeps amazing us with her resiliency,” Coach Tyrell Neal said.
With last week’s achievement, White becomes the first girl in school history to medal all four years at region and at the annual Cache-Box Invitational. Those medals include three runner-ups and an individual championship both at Region (2019) and at Cache Box (2020). She was also an integral part of the first two Cache Box titles (2018, 2019) for the girls’ program and the 2019 region title team. She is the first girl to medal twice at state, and to cap it off she was part of the past two 4A Girls Academic State Championships teams for the Lady Bears.
“Not sure that is happening again any time soon,” Coach Dan Line said. “We look forward to the great things she will do in college. She is the most accomplished girls distance runner ever at Bear River and she deserves that recognition in every way.”
Part of White’s leadership can be seen in the performances of the rest of the girls squad. Coming into the season the team had hopes of repeating as Cache Box and Region champions, with outside hopes of a state trophy. Injuries derailed over half of the team and two more of the varsity members had commitments with the soccer team.
“It just wasn’t any fun for a while to see the team kinda in disarray,” Neal said, “but those girls, they never quit.”
In addition to White’s second-straight 5th-place performance at state, junior Shylee Kofoed moved up several places during the final mile to take 22nd and claim the second-best mark in school history with an outstanding time of 19 minutes, 40 seconds. Naomi Tomlinson (37th, 20:14) and Liz Phillips (44th, 20:23) followed next, running strong and helping the team to their fastest performance in school history. Tomlinson moved into 8th place on the all-time Bear River record board.
Nailing down the final spots for the Lady Bears were freshman Rebecca Curtis (55th, 20:48), junior Katie Wynn (73rd, 21:16) and senior Kenya Tomlinson (77th, 21:24).
“Rebecca was the second best freshman at state this year,” Neal said. “What more can we say?”
The Bears finished fifth in the overall team standings, and Line said the future for the program is bright.
“I am sure they have more dreams they want to fulfill next year,” he said.