For extra inspiration to her runners, Massac cross country head coach Lindsay Zeiler dusted off and pulled out the “old-school” uniforms from way back in the closet.
These were the exact same uniforms used when she was a cross country and track standout for the Patriots.
The motivation must have worked.
With the boys team donning these throw-back uniforms, they ran with a purpose at the IHSA regional meet at West Frankfort on Saturday.
Enough so, that they qualified as a team to advance to the next round, which will be the sectional meet at Edwardsville on Saturday. The race will be conducted on the hilly course on the campus of SIUE.
At the regional meet, Massac boys performed well and were able to put together a strong fifth-place finish to be among the top seven scoring teams that qualify to advance to the sectionals.
Fairfield won the regional team title narrowly edging Hamilton County by two points from the field of 12 teams.
Derek Lawrence had an outstanding day, finishing first for Massac and 12th overall.
Lawrence slashed about a minute from his best time of the year to clock a 17:34 time over the 3-mile course. This to average well under six minutes per mile.
Senior Dan Fort also contributed a strong performance to keep his cross country career alive by finishing second for Massac, 26th overall with a time of 18:24.
Other Patriots runners in the order of finish include: Kendall Henderson (18:28, 28th OA), Clayton Obermark (18:42, 32nd OA), Ross Scheve (20:48, 59th OA), Ben Markus (21:35, 64th OA) and Reed Scheve (23:12, 67th OA).
On the girls side, Massac suited up one runner to compete this day.
Though Autumn Long ran one of her best races of the year, it wasn’t good enough to qualify to move on for next round.
It remains to be seen if the team ends up wearing the “old-school” or their regular uniforms at the sectionals on Saturday.
However whatever the look happens to be, it has already been a successful season for the Massac harriers.