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The student news site of La Salle Catholic College Preparatory.

The La Salle Falconer

The student news site of La Salle Catholic College Preparatory.

The La Salle Falconer

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Junior Maya Crimin Runs Into La Salle History in Record Time

Jasmine McIntosh
Crimin’s next race is Oct. 7 at the Harrier Classic located at Bryant Park in Albany, OR.

Beating the school record in the 5K was a goal for junior Maya Crimin since the end of her freshman year of running for the Falcons.

On Friday, Sept. 22, 2023, she had achieved her goal with the time of 19:00.6.

Crimin finished second in a 5K race at the Cross Country NW Classic at Lane Community College in Eugene, Oregon, competing against teams from all over the region. The result of the race led Crimin to beat Brigid Hanley’s 2018 school record of 19:01.6 by just one second.

“I think that was kind of on our radar last year a little bit,” head coach Mr. Mikel Rathmann said. He knew the team had the potential to break this record, it was just a matter of who. For Crimin, she was determined to make history at La Salle.

Going into the race, Crimin’s intention was the same as any other race: beating her previous PR.

Her previous race wasn’t her best, so going into this competition, she was seeking redemption. “I was really nervous because I hadn’t done well for a while,” Crimin said. But it was her mindset that pushed her through the finish line, breaking her PR.

“It wasn’t like I specifically was saying, ‘I’m gonna go out and break the record today,’ it was always there in the back of my head that I could do it,” she said. “It was a lot of telling myself that I could and I could do it.”

Before the race, the cross country team wrote mantras on their arms as a motivational tactic to keep them going. “I wrote on one arm, ‘be fast and pass,’” she said, “and on the other I wrote a mantra I say to myself when I’m running which is, ‘you are strong, you are tough, you do not quit,’ because [this sport is] a lot of mental game.”

For this race in particular, she had a different plan than usual. “I went out with the race plan of going out not as fast as I usually did or did the last time, and then trying to pass people,” she said.

The most challenging part for her was a section around a series of ponds. “Nobody’s there, so it’s you, and your mind, and the competition,” she said.

The race finished on a track where the runners’ times were visible from 100 meters away. Though she was nervous about not finishing the race under her goal for the season, she was still committed to breaking the La Salle record. “I crossed the finish line and I literally started crying, there were actual tears. I was so happy even though I didn’t get under 19 [minutes],” she said.

Coming back to school on Monday and hearing her name announced on the morning announcements, Crimin felt slightly embarrassed. “My friends were like ‘Maya we’re gonna tell Rathmann to make sure you’re on the announcements,’” she said.

She ran every day throughout the summer to prepare for the season, totaling to roughly 320 miles. She had run around 320 miles in the previous offseason, so this year it was a matter of trying to match her miles.

Crimin started her running career in the second grade, running on three different club teams before making the transition to the La Salle cross country team. She ran for Foot Traffic Youth Track Club for second through fifth grade, then in fifth through eighth grade she ran for Bowerman Track Club.

Other than being a vital part of the cross country team, Crimin participates in swimming and track. Although she plans to focus on her winter training this year for cross country.

It’s her love for running and the support from the people around her that keeps Crimin going.

“I run for myself because I love it, but I also run for everyone around me and I want to make people proud,” she said. “I want to make my coach proud, I want to make my family proud, and my teammates.”

Crimin is encouraged the most by Coach Rathmann. “He is always pushing us to do our best and he’s a coach that cares about each of us so much,” she said.

Along with her head coach Mr. Rathmann, Crimin sees her team as a big support system contributing to each other’s success. “We just all have high aspirations and we’re doing our best to get there,” Crimin said.

For Mr. Rathmann, building a program upon positivity is a key detail for success. “Stay positive, listen to your body, and then come back stronger,” he said.

As a co-leader on the team, these words are more significant than ever for Crimin. She tries to be the most positive person she can possibly be. “Positivity is really important in running specifically,” she said.

The team’s atmosphere is very welcoming, and they participate in team activities such as secret sister, wearing team ribbons, and cheering each other on. One highlight for Crimin is screaming songs on the bus. “It’s really fun overall, it’s pretty positive,” she said.

Beyond the La Salle cross country team, Crimin looks up to Melody Fairchild, who set the standing record for American junior and national high school record in the indoor 3,000 meters in 1991. Crimin describes meeting her as cool and eye opening. She had the opportunity to meet Fairchild during a summer camp, where she also had the chance to talk to her and listen to Fairchild’s life story.

Looking into the future, Crimin is beginning to explore the prospects of continuing her running career in college. “I didn’t really think it was a possibility,” she said. Crimin has just begun the college conversation, but despite this she is optimistic about exploring her options for the next level.

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    AnneOct 5, 2023 at 12:19 am