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Tue, July 23

Lee Williams runners ready to build program

KINGMAN - Joan Abraham is close to completing her foundation.

Currently wrapping up her 2013 girls roster, the Lee Williams High cross country coach intends to have a full girls roster to complement the boys roster, which is already set.

Entering its second season, the team has yet to win a race - but last season's runners showed promise. This year the leaders are expected to be sophomores Brendon Allred, Jeffery Nagel, Megan Barnes and Kara Swenson.

"Brendan was my top runner last year and he did really well. I expect him to make improvements this year," Abraham said. "(The league) looked at him, at all the meets we went to, they'd point to him and say, 'Do you see that? He's a freshman. He's beating you.'

"He just was really solid last year. As he gets older, he's going to get stronger and stronger."

Abraham also has high expectations for Barnes, who hurt her shin during the off-season but spent the summer recovering and getting back into the routine. Abraham said Barnes' health is a major priority during the season.

"She struggled with that for a couple of weeks, wasn't really able to run," Abraham said. "She's been healthy all summer. She's been healthy the week that we've been able to practice.

"I'm looking forward to seeing what she can do."

Heading into their first meet for county on Sept. 4, which will take place at LWHS, Abraham is excited - and holding her breath.

"Our course is going to be difficult. It's very, very hilly," Abraham said. "These other schools, their courses are pretty much flat. It should be interesting to see what happens."

She's well aware of how tough it'll be to compete directly with schools like Kingman High, Kingman Academy and Lake Havasu.

"Do I expect to go out there and win a lot of races? Probably not. Do I expect to score and have kids that can finish up in the top 10? Absolutely," Abraham said. "I think I've got kids that are capable of that."


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