The grass green, the trees tall, and the hopes high, the Tripp boys cross country team walked into their first meet with pride and a high level of anxiousness. They were a small team, but they were a good team. The day was long and the race was in everyone’s minds. As the race drew near and the kids lined up, the official raised his arm. The gun was about to be fired.

” Runners set, BANG!”

They were off, the fans yelling, and now the pressure was on. As the gun was fired their hearts all skipped a beat. Thomas Rabon, Tim Dow, Tim Enos, Jared Richardson and Cody Hinkley were all out in the front pack. Would it stay that way? Our coach, Mr. LaFlamme was encouraging us all the way. He’s a great guy and he had prepared us for the invitational.

The course at Tripp takes you into a loop called the small loop two times and you also go into another loop known as the “Big Loop.” As we came out of the small loop for the first time the five strong runners were together pushing each other. Many spectators watched as the runners headed to the big loop. We trudged up the field hockey field and into the big loop. People started to drop back and Tripp moved up. Thomas Rabon was up in front with Mt. Ararat’s Ben St. Laurent. We all felt the pressure as we went to into the small loop for the second time.

The cheers thundered through their bodies as they were about to go around the baseball field and into the final stretch. Everyone was sprinting and as the top two runners, Rabon and St. Laurent, were finishing. St. Laurent edged out Rabon but it was a great race. Rabon placed in 2nd while Tim Enos and Tim Dow finished in 5th and 6th place. Now Cody Hinkley and Jared Richardson finished in the 11 and 12 spots. Mr. LaFlamme was there congratulating their efforts. The rest of the team was pushing the 5 top runners. Eric Dennis, Patrick Ward, Jarvis Simpson, Casey Mower, and Jordan Blais all gave their efforts toward the team also.

When the final results came in the Tripp Tigers came up with the upset victory. Richardson and Dow pumped up, did a jumping chest bump, as they expressed their emotions. “I was out there in the wilderness all alone. Mind, body, and soul as one. I just ran. As a team we ran to win. And that’s what we did.” Richardson quoted.

We got a quote from Rabon also, ” I’m happy with the team. I also didn’t do bad as an individual either,” Rabon said with a smile. I caught up with Tim the day after the race. “I never would have thought that I would come so far in so little time. I never would have dreamt that our team could have won, but we did.” Dow said. The final results were: Tripp 36, Brunswick 42, Mt. Ararat 48, and Bath 116.

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