Sophomore runner advances to first on team this season


Amy Young

Sophomore Nora Salem, runs at the Marlington Invitational and is the only one to qualify out of Districts

With months of hard work, dedication, lots of tears and sweat, the girls cross country team has a new leader on the way.  

Sophomore varsity runner Nora Salem came out and showed not only the team, but the whole region what she can do. Throughout the two seasons Salem has had with the team, she has shown what it takes to be a true runner and push through thick and thin, with pain and joy coming with it. 

Salem came from being the sixth and seventh runner on the team, to coming out her sophomore year being number one. 

“When we were practicing in the summer, I came to the season thinking I’ll be top five on the team. When we did the time trials, I finished second on the team, also two seconds behind the number one,” Salem said. “It amazed me that I was able to accomplish that. Then the first meet, which was the Golden Eagle Invitational, I placed first on the team. I was so happy with my accomplishments throughout the season and I was very proud with my progress.”

Salem has not only had herself to push through workouts and the mental state of the sport, but also her coach, Scott Ferrell. He plays a big role when it comes to her sports and the way she wants to perform. 

“Come into the season, my mindset was very weak. I do not have high or positive thoughts about this season,” Salem said. “I started training more as a team, it made me think more positively about my season because I knew we were already better as a team.”

According to Salem, Ferrell puts so much into the way he trains his players to get her to where she is today. He has changed the way he wants Salem to train in order for her to be on top. 

She made a conscious decision to take herself to the next level,” Ferrell said. “She is committed to cross country and sacrificed tennis, we kept her mileage up and peaked her for regionals.

— Scott Ferrell

Not only are workouts and mileage days changing, so is Salem’s whole mindset. 

“Constant reminders of how good she is and how she has that potential to be better,” Ferrell said. 

Salem went into this season with a totally different mindset than she did last year.

“I feel last year was my training year. I was a freshman and I do not think about what I really had in for me. This year, I knew I needed to be better and I needed to become a better athlete than I was the previous year,” Salem said. “If you give me the times I needed, he told me I was a good leader, the courage meant on the course, and his ability to get me to be the runner I should have helped me mentally and physically on the course and for the team.” 

With all these constant reminders and different levels of training, Salem has had many accomplishments this year. But, also has a lot more potential that Ferrell sees in her. 

“She is 1st team all Federal League and a regional qualifier,” Ferrell said. “She also has the potential to be a state qualifier and lead the team once again.” 

Salem has many accomplishments under her spikes and she tends to keep them and achieve more of her goals in the seasons she has yet to come.

“Next year’s season, I have so many goals based off of this past season. I want to be even better. I want to become the runner I should be, become a better athlete, a better leader, and a better teammate,” Salem said. “I want to run in the 19’s and most of all, I want to go to state with my team! I cannot wait for next year.” 

Salem has set her goals and has even set a better goal for her team as she will lead them on in the oncoming years to make them better, faster, stronger and most of all a family. 



Want to hear more about Nora?  Check out our pod cast about her here.