XC Journal: Courtney Smith, Unionville - Entry #7 - Dec 5 - One more race to goal


Unionville senior Courtney Smith entered her third year of XC with a resume that has been growing season-to-season. As a sophomore, she was 4th in AAA at Hershey. Then last year, she won her first state title, setting a meet and course record. In the winter, she broke the state record in the 3000 meter run, but had to settle for 2nd place. She more than made up for it by twice outsprinting the same competitor, first for 3rd place in the Girls 3000 Invitational at the Penn Relays, and then in the finals of the AAA 3200 meter run at the PIAA State Championships. Smith led her team to a qualifying spot and trip to NXN after winning the Northeast Regional. But in the first 1000 meters in Portland, she fell and was spiked. She recovered for 10th. Then during indoor, and despite an injury, Smith captured 3rd in an incredible 3000 at PTFCA Indoor States, and anchored her DMR to a state title. Two weeks later, she anchored that DMR to a 6th place finish in the New Balance Nationals Indoor champs in a time ten seconds better than their state title... and anchored the 4xmile the next day to a 3rd place finish - both earning all-American recognition. But the injury endured. She went through PT, and returned to racing at the Henderson Invitational on May 2nd. Beyond happy to be back.


Outdoor Track:

Entry #10 5/5  |

Indoor Track

Entry #9 3/26

Cross Country: 
Entry #1 9/2  |  Entry #2 9/30  |  Entry #3 10/7  |  Entry #4 10/14  |  Entry #5 10/28  |  Entry #6 11/10  |  Entry #7 12/5  |  Entry #8 12/10


Courtney Smith
SR. Unionville HS, PA

Journal Entry #7 (December 4, 2013)
Undefeated through NXN NE - one more race to goal


Hi PA!

I hope everyone had a really nice Thanksgiving! The last few weeks since states have flown by! Since there is so much time between states and regionals, we got back to our routine and got in some hard practices before backing off. Our practices gave us confidence that we are ready and peaking at the right time because we did one of the same key practices that we did the week of districts and we were all a lot faster. We also had our banquet with the whole guys and girls team, which was fun but weird since our season isn't over yet.

We celebrated Thanksgiving with our families on Thursday and then left for New York on Friday morning. We stopped at Subway on the way up and then went to the park to practice and see the course. We arrived at the hotel around 5, waited in line for a while, and then when we finally got to the front, they told us our rooms were not ready. We decided to head to dinner to save time instead of waiting, then on the way back we stopped by the Ramada Hotel because we had been told we could register there any time that night. When we stopped by, though, they told us registration was closed and we would have to do it Saturday morning. Then we went back to the hotel to finally check in, but our rooms still weren't ready. Finally, around 8:30, they let us into the rooms, except only one of the rooms was a double so Kacie and Cami had to sleep on a pullout bed.

Luckily, Saturday was a much better day for Unionville than Friday was! It was so neat being at the Nike meet with so many great runners and teams. The girls NE championship race was the last race of the day at 12:35 so we got to catch glimpses of some of the races before us during warm up. I really liked the course even though it was kind of muddy and had a lot of narrow turns. The first half had a steep hill, but once you got to the 2.5k it was down hill from there! During the race, I was running in a pack of four for the first half at a pretty comfortable pace. Once we reached the top of the hill, Abbie McNulty took off and I followed. The two of us broke away and I was running a few meters behind her. Once we entered the woods, I still felt really strong so I took the lead and kicked it in. After the race, we all found each other and then waited nervously to find out the results. As always, it was a really close battle between Pennsbury and Unionville, but we definitely showed the other states how good PA running is by taking the top two spots!

The rest of the day was a blur as we went from awards to pictures to the Nike information room where we received papers to prepare for Oregon! Afterwards we still had to cool down for a while and we ended up being the last team to leave. We all drove back on the van together and stopped at Panara again.

I want to give two thank you shouts too. First, thanks to Cami Rickenbach who trained with us the last few weeks, supported us at Regionals, and warmed up/cooled down with us. Her help and support was priceless and we will miss her so much in Oregon and we wish she could come too! Second, thanks to Sara Sargent for cheering for me during the race on Saturday. She was standing right before the woods towards the end of the race in an area where there weren't many people. I remember indoor states my freshman year when I ran in a DMR and we stopped during warm up to watch the 3K run because Lauren Mills (a Unionville senior at the time) was running. I couldn't believe how strong and fast Sara was as she basically lapped most of the field, running a pace for the 3K faster than I'd ever gone in the mile at the time. She was already so far ahead and running such a fast time, then with one lap to go, she sprinted even faster and broke the state record! Watching that race, I never thought she would ever know my name or that I even existed, let alone cheer for me during a race a few years later! So thanks, it really meant a lot to me!