With stomach cramps at the one-mile mark, junior Regan Rome considered dropping out of the state race.
Despite the pain, her teammates proved to be her No. 1 concern that day, as she battled to a third-place time of 19:14 and propelled her Dallas girls cross country team to a second-place finish overall.
I wanted to finish for my team, said Rome, The Times Leader Runner of the Year in girls cross country. I just thought about them and I knew they would do the same for me. I knew we could still get points so I pushed through, and getting second as a team is still awesome.
Rome came into the state meet undefeated on the season, winning districts with a time of 20:17 and setting a personal record time of 17:42 en route to winning the WVC championships.
I was hoping one time this season to get under 18 minutes, Rome said. It was definitely one of my biggest accomplishments, that means a lot to me.
What would mean more is a state title, and coming up just short after a dominating season adds more fuel to next season's preparation.
It motivates me a lot because I want to do better, Rome said. I was confident, especially after how good I ran coming in (to states). I think about it and I want to redeem myself and hopefully I'll be able to win states next year.
With Rome already eyeing the prize, she has begun training for her senior campaign with the Mountaineers.
We train all during the winter, Rome said. We'll just keep the distance up, not too many speed workouts but just stay running around. My coaches give me my training plans and my family is always there to support me, and my teammates are just amazing. Rome said.
Running does run in the family as Rome's younger sister, Ally, finished 18th at states and will be entering her sophomore year.
I was so happy when my sister medaled, Rome said. I was really proud of her.