Navajo Pine knows it’s the one to beat


File photo
Navajo Pine Warrior Michael Marshall celebrates as he crosses the finish line in first place at last year’s New Mexico Class 1A-2A state cross-country meet.

The Navajo Pine High School cross-country team knows that they’re the team the rest of the state is talking about.

The reigning 2A state champions went into the new season understanding that they’re one of the teams to beat this season in class A/2A.

Navajo Pine head coach Kyleigh Thompson said the team was conscious of the situation and used it to motivate them in the off season.

“We probably worked out more this summer than last summer. Our kids were more dedicated this year,” she said. “We talked about it with the boys at the end of the school year. They understood that since they won the title coming into this coming season, they knew a target would be on their back.”

For the boys’ team, Navajo Pine returns all top seven runners, including: juniors Michael Marshall, Galvin Curley, Dominique Clichee; freshman Marallus Chee, and sophomore Micah Tsosie.

Marshall came in first last season for the team and for the individual state title, Curley finished in second overall and for the team.

Thompson said the team has focused mostly on speed and will looking to better their times this season.

She said one of the runners has vowed to turn in a time of 16 minutes and is close. She added that it’s important to them especially because 3A reigning state champs Pecos has moved down to their class in District 2.

“They know that they have to compete with Pecos,” Thompson said. “They were in 3A and now they’re in 2A with us. They looked pretty good and our boys were already comparing their times to their boys.”

The girls’ team finished in fifth place as a team last season and returns three top runners: Aliyah Gorman, Angellece Bryant and Kalika Bryant.

Thomson said things are not as clear for the girls as they make adjustments.

“Things are a little iffy with the girls right now,” she said. “But they’ve been active and coming out for summer workouts.”

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Categories: Track & Field

About Author

Sunnie R. Clahchischiligi

Sunnie Clahchischiligi has been the sports writer for the Navajo Times since 2008. She has a bachelor’s degree in print journalism from the University of New Mexico. Before joining the Times, she worked at the St. Cloud Times (Minn.), the Albuquerque Journal, the Santa Fe New Mexican, Sports Illustrated Magazine in New York City and the Salt Lake Tribune. She can be reached at or via cell at (505) 686-0769.