FALL SPORTS PREVIEW: Moews to impart running knowledge to WarriorsWarriors have just four seniors, yet they are optimistic this is their year
After 30 years of coaching, John Simmons will not be at the helm of the Van Buren cross-country program this season.
Enter Lucinda Moews, who first started helping with the team when her children were participating in the sport. Moews eventually became the junior high coach, and now in 2014, she takes over the program.
“I am an avid runner and have been running seriously since high school,” Moews said. “I thought it was a good way to be involved with my kids and also offer my knowledge of running to their peers.”
Simmons took Moews under his wing in their years coaching together. Moews feels she is ready to point the runners in the right direction and maintain the program that Simmons built in the upcoming years.
“I cannot thank [Simmons] enough for everything he has taught me,” Moews said. “I am very excited, but also nervous about taking on the behind-the-scenes aspects of coaching.”
She has made her imprint already, pushing the runners at Keosauqua-Lacey State Park with intense workouts. Junior high coach Wes Atwood has intimate knowledge of the park’s trails and has been an invaluable resource for Moews this preseason.
“Coach Atwood is a first time coach, but has an extensive knowledge of running and has high energy,” Moews said. “He really seems to motivate our runners.”
The input of these two coaches will be important as Van Buren tries to take a step forward in a year of transition. A small but dedicated group of seniors will lead the way for the Warrior harriers. Nolan Lydolph on the boys’ side and Alison Dickinson on the girls’ side are two runners that have been with the program since their junior high days. Their experience will prove vital to a young roster that is in need of upperclassman to look up to.
Two more seniors, Kaitlyn Johnson and Sarah Frey, who are new to the program, will join Lydolph and Dickinson. Johnson was a star this winter on the basketball court, but this fall she will turn her sights to the trails.
A trio of juniors on both sides of the coin will likely see plenty of varsity action as well. Sydney Atwood, Bethany Millard and Taylor Murguia each were with the program last season. On the boys’ side of things, Robert Barker, Dalton Haynes and Chase Murphy will likely join Lydolph in the starting lineup.
The Warriors will get things started Sept. 4 at the Wildwood Invite. Van Buren’s only home invitational is on Sept. 9. Like always, they hope they can win their home meet. The girls finished in third place last year, even with a third place individual finish from Sydney Atwood. She ran the course in 18:01. On the boys’ side, Nolan Lydolph finished 14th individually with the time of 20:25. The Warriors grabbed second place in their class.
“This is going to be a learning experience,” Moews said. “I have no doubt in the ability of my Van Buren cross-country family to support each other and have a successful season.”
2014 Van Buren cross-country varsity schedule
9/4 @ Wildwood Invite (@ Ottumwa)
9/9 Van Buren Invite
9/11 @ Davis County (Lake Fisher)
9/18 @ Fort Madison (Rodeo Park)
9/22 @ Mt. Pleasant
9/30 @ Harmony (Indian Lake)
10/9 @ SEISC Meet (@ Mediapolis)
10/14 @ Central Lee Invite
10/16 @ Pekin (Lake Darling)
10/23 @ Districts (TBA)
Head Coach: Lucinda Moews, 1st Year
Key Returnees: Boys- Nolan Lydolph (Sr.), Girls- Alison Dickinson (Sr.)
Alison Dickinson, Sr.
Sarah Frey, Sr.
Kaitlyn Johnson, Sr.
Sydney Atwood, Jr.
Bethany Millard, Jr.
Taylor Murguia, Jr.
Brooke Dunkin, So.
Alyssa Bartholomew, Fr.
Sarah Davis, Fr.
Ceyda Nazli, Fr.
Nolan Lydolph, Sr.
Robert Barker, Jr.
Dalton Haynes, Jr.
Chase Murphy, Jr.
Thayne Runyon, So.
Justin Zollars, So.
Adam Smith, Fr.
Russell Pilcher, Fr.
Jeremy Gorsuch, Fr.
Callum Beebe, Fr.