Athlete Name: Jack Barganier
School: Montgomery Academy
What was your most memorable meet and why?
My final state meet. It was the most memorable weekend of my life, spent enjoying fantastic races and mourning the fact that I would never compete again. I've never been more emotional or determined.
Where did you face your biggest competition?
Again, my final state meet. From 9th grade to 11th grade I had usually been the favorite or among the favorites to win the mile and 2 mile. This season, the competition stiffened, as many great runners who I have been running against for years reached their peaks. For the first time since 9th grade, I came away with no gold medals.
Out of all of your high school accomplishments which stands out the most and why?
The 3200 at the state meet my junior year. I caught up with my good friend Nick Klein in the final stretch and won the race by less than a second.
If you could do it all over again what would you change about your running career in high school?
Nothing. It wasn't ever perfect but I learned from my triumphs and failures. And I became friends with the best people in the world.
What were the most difficult obstacles you had to overcome?
This season I had to overcome some pretty painful loss of confidence. It was a combination of injuries, harder competition, and occasional lack of motivation as my final season came near its end. But I had a wonderful state meet, with one or two PR's, and most importantly I ran my heart out like never before.
What will you miss the most?
My friends, especially the guys cross country team. They are the reason I am I who I am, no question.
Do you have any advice for younger athletes?
To those of you who will remain on the MA track/cross country teams next year, keep pushing until you can't push anymore. Then push harder. That's what we've always done. Don't ever lose heart and don't lose sight of the most important part of the sport: running for each other.
What are your post-highschool or college plans?
I'm going to Sewanee. Most likely won't be running.
Who would you like to say thank you to?
My parents, of course, and my coaches, Coach Floyd, Coach Heffner, Coach Nelson, and Coach Brown. Most of all, I want to thank my fearless brothers and best friends: Will Franklin, Aubrey McGlaun, Bennett Griffin, Griffin Payne, Fred Tippett, Keefe White, Grant Woika, Will Barganier, Jack Anderson, and all of my other teammates I've ever had. I wish I could fit all your names on here. Much love.