Vikings, Lady Vikings runners ready to kick off season

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The Charlo High School cross country team will be without one of the top-notch hall of fame caliber team coaches, who has been the Vikings and Lady Vikings’ head coach since Charlo become a MHSA-sanctioned cross country team in 2012.

Newly appointed Vikings and Lady Vikings coach Amy Delaney is no stranger to the cross-country program.

“It is my first year as a head coach in Charlo at the high school level,” Delaney said. “We never had a varsity sport and two kids on the team traveled. I have followed them to all of the meets. I am willing to take over the program because I don’t want to see it go down. I decided to take a stab at coaching since this is my first time as a high school head coach and I know all of the kids.”

On the boy’s side, the Vikings’ have one definitive leader in Wills Degrandpre.

“(Wills) will be our leader on the boys team and last year he placed in cross country as an all-stater,” Delaney said. “Wills will lead the team. The next strongest runner Conner Koenig, who had a hamstring injury and spent the summer rehabbing, will be our No. 2 runner. Those will be my two and the other two boys will continue to improve as the season goes along.”

Lady Vikes X-C get ready for 2018

The Charlo High School girls’ cross country team is also embarking on the start of the year and what they lack in actual numbers of participants, they more than make up for it in enthusiasm.

“It is pretty nice and they’ve not only been practicing for a week, but they’ve actually been running pretty closely together,” Delaney said. “It is nice for them to challenge each other at practice. They have individual goals for them and are trying to meet them to get better.”

Delaney has a simple goal to have her team improve on their individual times and they continue to focus on getting better.

“They are really trying to get better, make this year really fun and to promote our club so other kids see that it is a great sport and we will generate some interest in it,” Delaney said. “We are having a fun run over Labor Day weekend. Hopefully, that will build the team and get other kids to look at us to see that running might be an option. Running in an individual sport might appeal to some kids that don’t have a lot of skill and are afraid to compete in team events.”

Delaney is no stranger to the Charlo school system. Delaney has been part of the Charlo school system as a teacher and coach for over 26 years.

“There wasn’t one kid on this team that I didn’t know,” Delaney said. “I’ve had that relationship with all of them since they were little. I’ve known them since they were little and I know what motivates them. I know their parents and I know what to expect from them.”

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