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2024 MIHS XC Season

- Spotlight On -

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June 23rd - MIXC Kick-Off Picnic

@ Coach Empey’s (7744 85th PL SE) Come learn more about our summer training program, key fall dates, meet teammates, coaches, captains, play some games, and eat some yummy hot dogs (veggie dogs available too).

 

Rising 9th graders - we hope to meet you, too! And don't forget - the best way to stay up to date on all things MIXC is to join the Band App. (Parents included!)

Questions? Contact Susan Empey, MIXC Head Coach at susan.empey@mercerislandschooldistrict.org

July TBD - Team Pancake Breakfast

Let's treat our preseason runners to a Pancake Breakfast, Thursday, July 20th from 11am-12:30pm.

 

If you are able to help, we are looking for some additional sides to feed 20-25 athletes. Please sign up and drop off at 7626 East Mercer Way, between 10:30-10:45am on Sunday. We really appreciate Angelisa Paladin and the Kolpa family, for offering to host our athletes.

 

Thanks for your support. 

  • Drop off items at 72626 E Mercer Way between 10:30-10:45 am on Thursday, July 20th.

Questions? Contact Ly-Lan McCarthy, MIXC Volunteer Coordinator at ltwmccarthy@gmail.com

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August TBD - Summer Practices Begin

Daily practice "opportunities" throughout the summer.

Monday through Friday.  Meet at Island Crest Park: 9:00 - 10:30am.

August 1 marks the beginning of official captains’ practices. While a coach may pop in to say hello, these practices are led by our fearless and fantastic leaders:

These practices are extremely valuable for building fitness before the season begins. Another benefit is connecting with teammates before the season and school begins.

Team Spirit Wear - Stores Closed

Need some warm weather clothing? 

Looking for early Christmas gifts? 

In need of spirit wear that promotes your favorite sport? 

 

You are in luck.  We have a Pop Up Gear store for Mercer Island Cross Country.  For those who participate on the Track & Field Distance Team you can also choose a Mercer Island Cross Country Track and Field logo.

Store with Classic Logo: 

Spiritwear Homepage (snap.store)

High Fives

Meet and Snack Volunteers Needed

 

We need your help to fuel runners after they race. Healthy snacks and fluids are beneficial for athletes to recover and to replenish their tanks so they have energy to cheer on their teammates.

Please click the button below to take a look and sign up for the snacks needed, or volunteer to help during our one home meet of the season.

Questions? Contact Ly-Lan McCarthy,
MIXC Volunteer Coordinator at  
ltwmccarthy@gmail.com

Fresh Pasta Linguine with Dill and Veget

Team Pasta Feeds

 

A highlight for athletes, pasta feeds are held the night before meets to fuel up for the next day's race and rally team spirit. Dinners are potluck style and attending athletes contribute bread, salads, beverages and dessert.  Pasta feeds run from 6-7:30pm

 

  • September 5th, September 19th, September 26th and October 10th

More details about hosting/helping can be found by clicking the Volunteer button below. Thanks in advance for considering being a host or helper for these fun events!

2024 MIHS Special Events - Save the Date

June 23rd - MIXC Kick-Off Picnic

@ Coach Empey’s (7744 85th PL SE) Come learn more about our summer training program, key fall dates, meet teammates, coaches, captains, play some games, and eat some yummy hot dogs (veggie dogs available too).

 

Rising 9th graders - we hope to meet you, too! And don't forget - the best way to stay up to date on all things MIXC is to join the Band App. (Parents included!)

Questions? Contact Susan Empey, MIXC Head Coach at susan.empey@mercerislandschooldistrict.org

July TBD - Team Pancake Breakfast

Let's treat our preseason runners to a Pancake Breakfast, Thursday, July 20th from 11am-12:30pm.

 

If you are able to help, we are looking for some additional sides to feed 20-25 athletes. Please sign up and drop off at 7626 East Mercer Way, between 10:30-10:45am on Sunday. We really appreciate Angelisa Paladin and the Kolpa family, for offering to host our athletes.

 

Thanks for your support. 

  • Drop off items at 72626 E Mercer Way between 10:30-10:45 am on Thursday, July 20th.

Questions? Contact Ly-Lan McCarthy, MIXC Volunteer Coordinator at ltwmccarthy@gmail.com

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Fall Registration is Open

Mercer Island launched a brand new way to register for sports!

 

The athletic department is transitioning to Final Forms for athletic sports registration (only). Each family will need to create a new user id within Final Forms to register for sports. 

Click here to register.

If needed, step-by-step instructions for setting up your Final Forms account can be found here 

 

Registration closes August 18th.

 

Sports fee payments will still be made through our online payment system: 

 https://wamercerisland.intouchreceipting.com

Please note: Sports payments for the 2023/2024 school year will not open until August 1st. 

 

Physicals are due every other year. If your runner is due for a physical, please consider asking the pediatrician specifically for a blood test and a serum ferritin test. Ferritin is a key measurement for long distance runners to know; if levels are low, we want to work on increasing it ASAP. While “normal” for the general population is >12 ng/mL, endurance athletes need >= 30 ng/mL (and ideally >40). Fatigue and injuries can be a direct result of low ferritin levels. Even if your runner does not need a physical this year, I would recommend asking for this blood test. It is a good benchmark to have.

Questions? Contact Susan Empey, MIXC Head Coach at susan.empey@mercerislandschooldistrict.org

Parked School Buses

MISD Travel Forms

This packet includes every document needed to either pick up your student-athlete from a meet or have them be able to drive themselves when needed (specifics below).

These forms serve multiple purposes:

1)  General release that gives permission for runners to travel to all meets/invites/events/ destination runs in a method other than a district provided bus (including other students’ cars and other parents’ cars),
2)  Allows PARENT drivers to pick up their student-athlete from a meet,
3)  Allows PARENT drivers to drive members of the team,
4)  Allows STUDENT athletes to drive themselves,
5)  Allows STUDENT drivers to drive members of the team.
 
These forms only need to be completed once and are good for the remainder of the season.

Return completed forms to Becky LeMaster in office or via email at Becky.LeMaster@mercerislandschools.org

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August TBD - Summer Practices Begin

Daily practice "opportunities" throughout the summer.

Monday through Friday.  Meet at Island Crest Park: 9:00 - 10:30am.

August 1 marks the beginning of official captains’ practices. While a coach may pop in to say hello, these practices are led by our fearless and fantastic leaders: Nikesh Woerner, Sophia Fan, Durham French, Megan Sandoval, Clark Koopman, Addie Schiller, Owen Powell and Linus Hykes. Our team is in great hands.

These practices are extremely valuable for building fitness before the season begins. Another benefit is connecting with teammates before the season and school begins.

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August TBD - Season Begins

Aug 21 & 22 - 9:00 - 11:00 @ ICP

 

Aug 23 - 8:00 - 11:30 @ Tiger Mountain!  Buses leave from MIHS @ 8am.  Highly coveted t-shirts go to all who complete it! (thank you Boosters!!)

 

Aug 24 - 9:00 - 11:00 @ ICP. 3k Time Trial @ Pioneer Park.  (Volunteer opportunity)

Aug 25 - 9:00 - 11:00 @ Super Jock N Jill in Redmond.  Opportunity to get fitted for running shoes, spikes and apparel.  Everything 15% off for MIXC and sale items are 50% off.  We'll run the Sammamish River Trail for practice.

Aug 26 - 9:00 - 10:30 @ Newcastle Beach Park / Eastrail Trail (OPTIONAL but encouraged)


Aug 27 REST DAY!


Aug 28 - 9:00 - 11:00 @ Luther Burbank

 

Aug 29 - 9:00-11:00 @ ICP


Aug 30 - First Day of School. Practice at 3:15 - 5:15 at JV Football Field

Aug 31 - Registered Nutritionist will present to our team 4:30-5:30pm.  (MANDATORY)


Sept 1 - Uniform distribution (Volunteer opportunity)

Questions? Contact Susan Empey, MIXC Head Coach at susan.empey@mercerislandschooldistrict.org

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August TBD - MIHS Mandatory Meeting for Fall Sports

MIHS hosts mandatory meetings for all fall sports. Learn more about our coaches' philosophy, expectations of the team, goals for the season, practice & meet schedules as well as opportunities to support our athletes through volunteering and donations.

  • Students @ MIHS @ 3:15 - 3:45 pm

  • Parents @ MIHS @ 6 pm

Questions? Contact Susan Empey, MIXC Head Coach at susan.empey@mercerislandschooldistrict.org

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Aug 31st - Sept 1, 2024 - Team Retreat

The XC Annual Team Retreat returns in 2023! Everyone is encouraged to attend. Experience a full day of training, goal setting, team bonding and games at Fort Worden. Retreat costs $170/pp and includes transportation, field reservations, afternoon snacks and pasta dinner. The bus holds 50 attendees. Preference will be given to athletes who have been training this summer and are active on Strava.

  • Field trip forms will be distributed on the first official day of practice, August 21st.

  • Meet at MIHS at 7:45am for bus/ferry transport.

Questions? Contact Susan Empey, MIXC Head Coach at susan.empey@mercerislandschooldistrict.org

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Sept 10th - MIXC 3rd Annual IMS/High School Social Potluck

  • Sunday, September 10th

  • 5 - 7:30 pm

  • Mercer Island Shore Club

Please join us for the third annual MIXCTF social potluck for the families of our IMS and MIHS athletes! The goal of this event is to bring together both the IMS and MIHS XCTF communities for a chance to meet, mingle and support our young athletes. The event is for both athletes and their families!

Socialize and enjoy a delicious potluck food, hear from our IMS and HS coaches and purchase some team swag.

Please review the available slots below and click on the button to sign up. Adults: if adult beverages are your thing, BYOB (to share with the adults). Thank you!

SUPER FUN ATHLETE NOTICE: Athlete mixer….yes, please!!! If the social wasn’t enough fun…..there will be a fun opportunity for IMS athletes to meet high school athletes. How should your athlete prepare? Think sleep, food, hydration and proper running shoes….the rest will be disclosed at the social!

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Sept 27th - Senior Night

Senior Night coincides with our home meet at Luther Burbank.  Mercer Island hosts Bellevue, Juanita and Lake Washington.  Let's do it right! Volunteer positions are still open.

Timeline

3:30 Meet Volunteers Gather for instructions from the coaches at the Timers Tent / Finish Line (located in large grass field between north and south parking lots)

Volunteer Check-in with Coaches

  • Course marshals: please check in with Coach Gavin Cree to get assignments and fluorescent vest. 

  • Timers/start/finish line helpers: please check in with Coach Goldhammer

3:40 Senior Recognition

4:00 Meet Starts

5:30 Pizza Feed (Athletes & Families Welcome)

Questions? Contact Youngae Sandoval, MIXC Volunteer Coordinator at kooki900@yahoo.com

Nov 8th - End of Season Celebration

Celebration will be held on Wednesday, November 8th.- 5:30pm-7:00pm in the MIHS Commons.

More details to come, but parents – please do all you can to come celebrate your athletes.

 

Your generous donations allow the Boosters to serve a Qdoba buffet and sheet cakes.  The team will celebrate their success, including PRs, and accept coaches' and teammate awards.

 

Highlights and Awards include:

Captain Recognition

2023 Rising Stars: 

Most Improved: 

Most Valuable Teammate: 

Coach's Award: 

Senior Passdown Gifts

MIXC Awards Banquet 2023

Dates To Be Announced - Winter Conditioning

Meet in the MIHS Commons at 3:00pm to discuss realistic mileage targets and winter training goals.

Winter conditioning practices will be on Mondays, Tuesday and Thursdays from 3:30- 5:00/5:30.

Mondays and Thursdays we have weight room access from 5:00 - 5:30 pm

 

Meet just outside the track for a combination of social running that includes tempos, fartleks and hills. For those not participating in a Winter sport, you are strongly encouraged to come as often as possible, and run on your own days.

Questions? Contact Susan Empey, MIXC Head Coach at susan.empey@mercerislandschooldistrict.org

 3rd Annual MIXC Cross Country Trail Run

It’s official! The 2nd Annual MIXC (Friends, Family, & Ghosts of MIXC Past) Post-Thanksgiving Cougar Mountain Trail Run is happening the Sunday after Thanksgiving.

 

It’s a 4.5 mile loop (with options to go longer (7ish) or shorter) for everyone who’s up for hitting the trails. Course will be flagged and is open to all MIXC runners past, present, future and any extended friends and family who happen to be in town and want to join in.

 

Leftover pie and hot chocolate is encouraged for the post-run tailgate.

 

Rain or shine, meet at the Skycountry trailhead on Cougar Mountain by 9:45…

we’ll be running by 10.

Athlete Nutrition

Ever wonder when to eat before a meet?

Heidi Stickler, Nutritionalist,  met with our high school athletes and provided tips for maximizing nutrition for performance.

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Athlete Expectations

Our objective as a coaching staff is to create an environment where every athlete understands the importance of commitment, working hard to achieve goals, and the feeling of success that comes from reaching goals.  

Questions? Contact Susan Empey, MIXC Head Coach at susan.empey@mercerislandschooldistrict.org

Team Spirit Wear - Closed

Need some warm weather clothing? 

Looking for early Christmas gifts? 

In need of spirit wear that promotes your favorite sport? 

 

You are in luck.  We have a Pop Up Gear store for Mercer Island Cross Country.  For those who participate on the Track & Field Distance Team you can also choose a Mercer Island Cross Country Track and Field logo.

Cross Country Pop-Up Shop

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Cross Country Lives Here Signs

WE ARE LISTENING TO YOU!  Last year our athletes asked if we could create signs to demonstrate team pride like other school sports. Our first ever Cross Country Lives Here signs are available on a first come, first serve basis. Cost is $20, payable by cash, credit card or check made payable to MIXC & Track Club. 

 

To coordinate payment and delivery options, please Complete Form  

Team Updates

2023 KingCo Champions!

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Championship Season Underway!

Congratulations to all the Sub-Varsity runners who made a point to run ALL OUT for their last meet of the season. While there were seemingly hundreds of 4A runners, Mercer Island represented the 3A schools really well. Frosh/ Soph and Top 7 JV boys won their 3A division as did the Frosh/ Soph girls – who finished 3rd overall even among the 4A schools. And the Top-7 girls, even competing without a full squad, finished 1st among 3A schools. And while our varsity boys and girls are quite good (see below) the performances of these athletes really highlights how deep Mercer Island is and the progress we’ve made over the years. The energy and support for each other was fantastic and from my perspective a great way to end a super season.

 

KingCo Championships were Friday, and both the girls and the boys teams lived up to sky high expectations. They both won the team titles and thus earned the trophy and a new banner in the gym. This makes it the 3rd consecutive year the boys have won and the first since 2011 that the girls took the W. And while, yes, the Rodriguez sisters are game changers for MIXC, I challenged the rest of the girls team to win even if we eliminated Sophia and Victoria’s scores and they did exactly that, executing their plan perfectly. ALSO to be celebrated is that it is the first time since 2008 both girls and boys teams own the title at the same time.

 

Congratulations as well to Owen Powell for defending his individual title (and running the fastest time of the day) and Sophia Rodriguez for earning her first KingCo title. Friday was indeed a very special day and a highlight of my past 7 years with this team.

 

Up next is Sea-King District at Marymoor. Both teams need to finish in the top-5 to advance as a team to State, a goal we set at the beginning of the season. We have not had two complete teams compete at State since 2015, so come cheer them on! Short of both teams advancing, individuals can advance if they finish in the top 35.

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2023 District : Strong Finish

Championship Season  - MIXC is rolling!

Sky high expectations for both boys and girls varsity teams this season, yet they have somehow exceeded them.  Dominant wins at KingCo last week were fun, but performing how they did at District was even better.  The goals for both teams were to be in the top 5 so they could advance – as teams – to State.  Both teams crushed it.  Boys were seeded 3rd but ended up 2nd behind Seattle Prep, beating Blanchett who had, on paper, looked unbeatable.  Blanchett will be out with a vengeance next Saturday, but any time you beat them it should be celebrated.  And I actually think we have a shot to beat them again on the even bigger stage…..

 

The girls were nothing short of amazing.  Last year they finished 11th out of 12 teams at District but Friday their score tied for 2nd, with the tie breaker going to Roosevelt.  We coaches were so proud – the girls ran with heart, ran so strong, and nailed several PRs when it mattered most.  The girls had not qualified for State as a team since 2015, and it had been since 2014 that BOTH teams advanced.   So yes, Friday was a momentous day.

 

Much to celebrate on an individual level too.  Following up on their KingCo wins, Owen Powell and Sophia Rodriguez also won District titles.  But not far behind them were teammates earning 1st and 2nd All Team District honors – Victoria Rodriguez (2nd) and Bodie Thomas (3rd) and Matthew Lawrence (9th).  Please congratulate all runners:  Sophia Fan, Dora Cheng, Sofia Loop, Mia Kinney, and Sophia Sung on the girls side and Bridge Gerry, Silas Rennie, Linus Hykes and Clark Koopman on the boys side.  It take guts to stand on that start line when stakes are high and they were all fantastic.

Beyond proud and impressed with MIXC thus far but still looking forward to finishing this season STRONG!

 

Go MIXC!

 

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State Champions

Amazing day in Pasco for our state runners.  Headline goes to our state champions Sophia Rodriguez and Owen PowellSophia brought MI the first individual girls title in program history, and I believe ran the 5th fastest time ever on that course.  Knowing her competitive spirit she will undoubtedly be working her way up that list her next 3 years.  Absolutely outstanding performance.  And not to be outdone by his teammate, Owen added a XC state title to his 1600 track title while smiling and chatting with his friends along the way.  He raced his friendly rival from Blanchet stride for stride until tightening the screws with 400 to go and sealing his win, running the fastest time of the whole day, despite very slick course conditions.  This is not news to any of you reading this, but they are two incredible, humble and fun athletes and do our program proud.

 

The pride doesn’t stop with our champions.  We are awfully proud of Victoria Rodriquez coming in 2nd – as in the Rodriguez girls sweeping the 3A race (as they would have swept the 4A race too).  She runs beautifully, seemingly effortlessly, and apparently finds the Sun Willows course much easier than her past Pennsylvania state runs.  Bodie Thomas and Matthew Lawrence also landed on the podium, finishing 10th and 12th.  Even under my sky-high expectations, I could not have imagined this type of finish for these 5 athletes.  They do our program proud.

 

As for team results, the girls who had not been to Pasco as a team since 2015, finished 7th. What progress.   And while the Rodriguez’s clearly led the charge, this was a true team effort. Anna Ahrenholz, originally an alternate, deserves special kudos for dealing with the last minute decision to run in place of Sophia Sung who was sick.   She was fantastic.  And Dora Cheng and Sophia Fan,  each passed 12-18 girls on the last mile helping move us from 11th at the 2nd mile to 7th by the end.  Congratulations ladies.

 

The boys team was 8th, falling short of our season goals but better than last year.  Still proud of the effort AND we have one more race this season to put an exclamation point on what has been a remarkable season.  They head to Boise for NXR along with the Rodriguez sisters and will compete as the mighty Midlake Herons.

 

Looking forward to celebrating this season on Wednesday.  See you there!

 

Team Newsletters

Newsletters
  • Important Dates

  • Preseason Training schedule

  • Week 2 Update

  • Uniform Distribution

  • Week 5

  • Lake Washington Meet

  • Week 8

  • Hole in the Wall Meet

  • Week 11

  • District Results

  • Registrations due 8/18

  • Week 3

  • Social Potluck BBQ

  • First Meet

  • Week 6

  • Senior Night

  • Home Meet Recap

  • Week 9

  • 5 Team Meet 

  • Meet 1

  • Season Starts 8/21

  • Week 4

  • Class Jamboree Update

  • Week 7

  • Home Meet

  • Senior Night

  • Week 10

  • Championship Season Underway

  • KingCo Champions!!

  • Week 12

  • State Results

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