Athlete of the Week: Youth movement trailing Shimer

socxc-shimeraowSocastee High freshman Crystal Shimer is doing more than setting fire to the school’s cross country records; she’s also blazing the trail for a youth movement within the Lady Braves’ program.

The Mammy’s Kitchen Athlete of the Week led her young team to a fifth-place team finish in last week’s Class 3A state cross country championships, setting the school record of 19:30 around the Sandhills Research Center’s 5K course for a seventh-place individual finish.

“I was surprised,” Shimer admitted about her team and individual finish at states. “We have a good team but we are real young. We’re hoping to win states by the time we graduate.”

Shimer and her teammates have a few years to reach that lofty goal. Socastee’s top four finishers at most of their meets this season were clocked by four freshmen, although a sophomore and a pair of middle schoolers round out the roster. That’s good news for coach Robb Urbaniak and the future.

“Crystal has pretty much accomplished everything she set out to do at the beginning of the season,” he said. “She has been such a competitor, and that determination has poured over to the rest of our women’s team.”

Particularly with friend/classmate and teammate Jill Dudley, who has been neck-and-neck with Shimer throughout the season. Shimer finished fifth in the Horry County Championships for all-county honors, third in the region meet for all-region honors and fourth in the Lower State, and Dudley was right beside her almost every step of the way.

“All season she has battled with teammate Jill Dudley for the top spot for the Lady Braves,” Urbaniak said. “They trained together and ran just about every race together. … They really push each other to do their best.”

Shimer said the running-mate approach is more by habit than design. “We don’t start together, but we always seem to find each other and stick together for the rest of the race,” she said. “We race each other (down the final stretch) and the difference is always a few milliseconds.”

That was particularly true at the state meet, where the duo hooked up early and stayed on pace with the lead pack. Shimer’s time of 19:30.23 just edged Dudley’s 19:30.45, but they were more pleased with the team finish over individual bragging rights.

“Crystal and Jill just had this dynamic between them where they don’t have to say a word on the course, but they were always in sync,” Urbaniak recalled. “It was a combined effort for them to continue taking spots to finish as high as they did. …  It was all heart straight through the line.”

And with the season crossing the finish line too, Shimer and her teammates can turn their attention to track and field in the spring. Shimer, who began running with Myrtle Beach Track and Field Club in the third grade, is ready to shift gears to hard surface and keep the Lady Braves on the fast track.

“Crystal is a big part of the reason the running program at Socastee is on the return,” Urbaniak said.  “She’s fueling the fire to make this program successful year round, but through it all, I’m sure if you ask Crystal, she would say she just loves to run.”

He’s right: “I’ve been running since I was in the third grade and I love the competition,” she said. “Cross country or track, it doesn’t matter. I just love to run.”

Photo by Chris LeFever

Comments

comments

State runners hold home turf at MB Mini-Marathon

State runners hold home turf at MB Mini-MarathonA pair of Upstate runners from Greenville took top honors [more]

CAC swimmers impress at Coastal Classic Invitational

CAC swimmers impress at Coastal Classic InvitationalCoastal Aquatic Club (CAC) hosted its Ninth annual Coastal Classic [more]

Chants fight Mountaineers to finish but come up shy

Chants fight Mountaineers to finish but come up shyFor the fourth time this season, Coastal Carolina had a [more]

Conway claims region title with special win at Sumter

Conway claims region title with special win at SumterA bizarre special-teams turnaround proved to be very special for [more]

Region 7-4A: Chiefs win, take piece of region title

Region 7-4A: Chiefs win, take piece of region titleThe No. 2-ranked North Myrtle Beach High football team apparently [more]

Football Roundup: Braves, Saints win; Panthers falter

Football Roundup: Braves, Saints win; Panthers falterThe Socastee High offense had another big night to beat [more]

Chants shock No. 2 Terps amid late-season surge

Chants shock No. 2 Terps amid late-season surgeFor the second consecutive match, the Coastal Carolina men’s soccer [more]

Week 10 Previews & Picks: Points aplenty this season

Week 10 Previews & Picks: Points aplenty this seasonYou don't have to be a math major to keep [more]

Volleyball: 4 area teams sweep playoff openers

Volleyball: 4 area teams sweep playoff openersThe North Myrtle Beach High volleyball team opened the Class [more]

Former CCU fan favorite Gray dies in car accident

Former CCU fan favorite Gray dies in car accidentFormer Coastal Carolina University standout basketball player Chad Gray was [more]

Tennis: Saints, Seahawks, Braves win playoff debuts

Tennis: Saints, Seahawks, Braves win playoff debutsThe Christian Academy of Myrtle Beach girls tennis team waltzed [more]

Socastee boys make it seven straight region titles

Socastee boys make it seven straight region titlesThe Socastee High boys cross country team captures its seventh [more]

Lady Sharks capture fifth straight Lower State title

Lady Sharks capture fifth straight Lower State titleThe St. James High girls golf team officially made it [more]

NMB girls, SJ boys run to region XC championships

NMB girls, SJ boys run to region XC championshipsThe North Myrtle Beach girls and St. James boys cross [more]

Carolina Forest, Socastee qualify for state golf finals

Carolina Forest, Socastee qualify for state golf finalsThe Carolina Forest and Socastee High girls golf teams qualified [more]

Washington strikes gold, silver at SCISA state meet

Washington strikes gold, silver at SCISA state meetChristian Academy of Myrtle Beach sent eight qualifiers to the [more]

Trio of Lady Chants sweep weekly conference honors

Trio of Lady Chants sweep weekly conference honorsCoastal Carolina nearly swept the Sun Belt Conference weekly volleyball [more]

CCU shoots under par as team for top-five showing

CCU shoots under par as team for top-five showingFor the ninth time in nine opportunities this season, the [more]

Two local swimmers claim gold medals at state meet

Two local swimmers claim gold medals at state meetCarolina Forest's Taylor Steele and St. James Casey Mitchell were [more]

Keane injured as Coastal routed by Arkansas State

Keane injured as Coastal routed by Arkansas StateArkansas State quarterback Justice Hansen threw five touchdowns to lead [more]

Melchor's hat trick helps Chants upend Monarchs

Melchor's hat trick helps Chants upend MonarchsMartin Melchor scored a career-high three goals in leading Coastal [more]

Seahawks blast Bulldogs for second straight rout

Seahawks blast Bulldogs for second straight routDoug Shaw Memorial Stadium recently underwent major renovations. Perhaps they [more]

Chiefs capture first-place showdown with Wilson

Chiefs capture first-place showdown with WilsonThe North Myrtle Beach High football team placed itself firmly [more]

Football: Tigers rip Bruins; Panthers falter at Sumter

Football: Tigers rip Bruins; Panthers falter at SumterThe Conway High Tigers made a homecoming statement Friday night, [more]

Syracuse stuns Clemson, damages title repeat plan

Syracuse stuns Clemson, damages title repeat planNo. 2 Clemson suffered its first loss of the season [more]

State runners hold home turf at MB Mini-Marathon

State runners hold home turf at MB Mini-MarathonA pair of Upstate runners from Greenville took top honors [more]

CAC swimmers impress at Coastal Classic Invitational

CAC swimmers impress at Coastal Classic InvitationalCoastal Aquatic Club (CAC) hosted its Ninth annual Coastal Classic [more]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© 2017 Grand Strand Sports Report · RSS
Myrtle Beach Web Design
Kayaking in Myrtle Beach