Athlete of the Week: Glover goes distance with MBT&F

keysey1500 (2)Kelsey Glover didn’t know exactly what she was getting into when she joined the Myrtle Beach Track & Field Club this summer.

The rising junior at St. James High was just looking to work on her distance running in the offseason. That mission was accomplished, carrying her all the way to the USATF Junior Olympics Nationals in Houston, Texas last week.

“It was a great experience and there were a lot of really talented runners there, a lot faster than at the state and regionals,” said Glover, who finished 30th overall in the 3000 meters in the 15-16 age group with a personal record time of 12 minutes, 27 seconds. “The whole experience with the track club has been great. This is my first year and high school coach recommended I try it. Now I’m glad I did.”

If the summer seems like a blur to Glover, it’s because she’s been flying as much as the time. First she won the state championship in the 3000 and was runner-up in the 1500 to earn a trip to Rock Hill for the regionals. There she won the gold medal again in the 3000 and finished third in the 1500 to earn her way to Houston. The whirlwind summer has her ready to hit the ground running in the upcoming cross country season.

“I’m in a lot better shape for cross country than I have been in the past,” said Glover, who hopes to lead the Lady Sharks to their fourth region championship this fall. “I’d like to be in the 19-minute range, get to states and make the all-state team.”

Glover has a lot more confidence to reach those goals after a summer on the Junior Olympics circuit. She has run cross country, track and half-marathons since the seventh grade, but the additional work and tough competition have her ready to shoot for bigger goals in the future.

“I really enjoyed the competition and it’s also a great way to stay in shape,” she said. “The coaches have been wonderful to work with and the club even donated money to help me go to nationals. It’s definitely been a great experience.”

Glover had a pair of MBT&F Club teammates make major strides at nationals. Kayla Watkins was named a National All-American athlete in the Kayla Watkins in the 13-14 Girls Long Jump. Julian Durant placed 11th in the Javelin Boys 11-12 age group,  and Mia Adcock finished 13th in the Girls 13-14 Pole Vault.

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