Shooting for the stars

Kashon Harrison tops field in Foot Locker West Regional meet

Runner prepares to race through finish line banner

SUBMITTED
Kirtland Central High School junior Kashon Harrison placed first in the 39th Annual Foot Locker Cross Country Championships West Regional in a time of 15:38.4. The race was held in Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, California, on Dec. 2. Harrison’s victory qualified him for the Foot Locker Cross Country Championships National Finals happening this Saturday, Dec. 9 at in San Diego.

FRUITLAND

Kirtland Central High School junior Kashon Harrison is officially one of the top 40 best high school cross-country runners in the country.

Harrison finished first place in a time of 15:38.4 in the 39th Annual Foot Locker Cross Country Championships West Regional held in Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, Calif., on Dec. 2.

The victory came just weeks after Harrison won his first state title in the New Mexico High School Cross Country state championships.

Harrison said winning the race was one of three goals he set for the season. He said he was excited to meet the goal, but doesn’t want to celebrate just yet as he has one more race to go.

“After watching all these runners since my eighth grade year, I always wanted to run against the top athletes in the country and try to win,” Harrison said. “It’s really nice to know but I don’t get that excited because I haven’t finished my races yet, and I just want to see how my results would be by racing against the top athletes in the country.”

Harrison’s victory from the weekend qualified him for the Foot Locker Cross Country Championships National Finals happening this Saturday, Dec. 9 at in San Diego. The top 10 girls and boys from four regions; Northeast, West, South, and Midwest, will compete against each other in the Finals.

The regional race is open to any and all athletes of different levels of competition. Harrison has competed in the race since his eighth grade year and won the freshman level race as a freshman, placed 13th in the champions race, and finally won it this year.

Kirtland Central High School cross country coach Lenny Esson said it’s been something Harrison has built up to for some time.

He said it’s something Harrison has been looking forward to as it attracts college recruiters, which Harrison wants.

“It’s a goal each high school runner sets for himself. It’s a goal that we kind of visited last year and came back to see how he performed last year coming off of an illness (Harrison ran in the state meet last season fighting a cold). This year the goal was to be in that top five or top three. He’s only a junior but he’s getting a lot of calls and offers from different schools,” Esson said.

“There’s a lot of university coaches, junior colleges that are on that radar, they look at these races. He’s going to be racing this weekend with 39 other runners, he’s one of the 40 best.”


 To read the full article, pick up your copy of the Navajo Times at your nearest newsstand Thursday mornings!

  Find newsstand locations at this link.




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 sunnie@navajotimes.com.