Threinen ends great cross country career on a high note
At last Saturday’s state cross country meet, Isaac Threinen crossed two finish lines. One was the finish line for the state meet, and the other was the finish line of his high school cross-country career, but before the latter happened, he had one more record to break: his own.
With the rest of his cross-country team cheering him on, he beat his 98th place finish at last fall’s state meet by placing 96th this year.
Kasson-Mantorville Cross Country Head Coach Jared Pittman said one of the causes for that improvement is the familiarity that comes with being back at the state meet for a second time.
“In some aspects this year was easier. Physically, we trained to focus on it and he knew what to expect. We knew our strategy at the start of the race. Being there a second time is always a bit easier,” he said.
Although it was easier, Threinen wasn’t able to duplicate his success at the section meet. After finishing in 16:17 and setting a personal record at sections, he finished in 16:53 at the state meet.
Even though Threinen was running on a bigger stage, Pittman doesn’t think that difference was caused by nerves.
“Some days are just good days and some days are just a little off for whatever reasons. State was just a little bit of an off day,” he said.
Despite the off day, he was proud of Threinen’s performance at the state meet.
“I was very happy with Isaac. He followed his plans and tried his best. That is all I ever ask of any kid. Do your best and all will be well,” he said.
He also believes that Threinen was happy with his own performance.
“He was okay with it. He knows he did all he could that day,” Pittman said.
After Threinen competed in the section meet, his coach mentioned that getting off to a good start at the state meet would be critical and Threinen was able to do just that on Saturday.
“Isaac did a great job at the start. He got out into a great spot and through the mile was in good shape,” he said.
He believes Threinen was in such good shape because of his work ethic.
“Isaac is a great leader by example. He always does the best he can and always works hard,” Pittman said. “I will ask him what he plans to run for the day and he never disappoints. He sets a good bar for everyone else to try and achieve.”
That stick-to-itiveness and high standard for himself has served Threinen well throughout his illustrious high school career.
“Isaac has had a great career. Three HVL championships and two trips to state. He has his chances to go on and run in college if he chooses,” he said. “I just hope every kid that comes through our program learns to enjoy running and working hard. That perfectly describes Isaac now.”